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Wildlife Wars: My Fight to Save Africa's Natural Treasures
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Wildlife Wars: My Fight to Save Africa's Natural Treasures

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  165 ratings  ·  10 reviews
In this engrossing memoir, one of the most controversial, influential, and inspirational figures in African politics today gives the full story of his crusade to save Kenya's natural resources, and specifically the African elephant--a crusade that set him against internal corruption, poverty, and dangerous criminals. Sometimes at the risk of his own life, Leakey's love of ...more
Paperback, 336 pages
Published September 14th 2002 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published January 1st 2001)
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Dec 25, 2013 rated it liked it
Decent read. It turned out to be much more political than I was expecting, for some reason. I guess I should have assumed it would be highly political. I suppose I was just expecting more action stories directly from the bush. Some of the political explanations and of course, his versions of the stories, almost felt like a campaign. I can definitely see why he's famous for his ego. It came across largely in his writing. He seemed to find a way to tie in every person who had ever talked bad about ...more
May 19, 2009 rated it it was amazing
A good book about a critical period in KWS's history. I enjoyed it especially as many of the principals written about are friends.
Rebeka Várnagy
May 19, 2018 rated it liked it
A really important topic that doesn't get as much attention as it should. I didn't really care for the political aspects but that's just my personal preference
Jennie Richards
Apr 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book was a fascinating read about paleoanthropologist and conservationist Richard Leakey’s adult life. It focuses mainly on his years following his directorship of Kenya’s National Museums, when the President of Kenya at the time, Daniel Moi, hired Leakey to head the problematic and rogue Kenyan Wildlife Service (KWS). What was most interesting is how Leakey was handed a department riddled with corruption, rampant poaching, illegal ivory trade, nonperforming personnel, old and outdated equi ...more
Jan 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book is as relevant to todays poaching issues as it was to the time it focuses on. In 1989 Richard Leakey was appointed to be the Director of the Kenyan Wildlife Department. He expresses his passion for Kenyan wildlife and desire to save it as well as his love for his country. However the same problems faced him then as they do now. Those who do not learn history are doomed to repeat it, Greed, Money, Lies, and Corruption. These issues are a common theme thru out the book. What it does show ...more
Wendelle So
Jun 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: great
Richard Leakey is a conservation hero who faced difficult decisions and navigated a difficult political environment that resembled a busy intersection of competing interest groups. His tenure as Kenya's wildlife director turned the future of Kenya's elephants and national parks 180 degrees and was marked by vitality, strength of conviction, a grand vision, daring execution, logical decision-making and a flair for the dramatic that served well in international publicity and fundraising. This acco ...more
Jul 01, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Very interesting, but ends abruptly. I enjoyed learning about how poaching was stopped and Leakey's struggles in the government. But then he is back for one year and doesn't recount what happened, then briefly mentions being secretary to the president, and the book is over. Would have loved to hear more how those years went and if it helped resolve more issues with KWS.
Deborah Blair
Richard Leakey and Virginia Morell are always worth of our attention as we strive to educate ourselves in order to be more effective in our attempts to live sustainably with our fellow Co-Species - equal but differently abled on this planet.

I found that this book moves along in a life adventure as it explains the serious problems along the way - Corruption was rampant (rangers were poaching or in cahoots with the poachers) - Much of the equipment did not work - there was a lack of training for t
Aug 28, 2012 rated it really liked it
A very interesting read. I have to admit it : lately I really feel like reading conservation books and this one , of course, fits perfectly. What I found especially good about this book is that you, as a reader, learn a lot more about the corruption that was going on in a typical African nation in the late 1980's and early 1990's: Kenya.

It was also very enjoyable to see how close Leakey became with a important person in Kenya during that time: president Moi, the second president of the Republic
Natasha Soderberg
Feb 14, 2008 rated it did not like it
I eventually gave up on this book. He is just too self involved and self important for me to be able to see through the writing to the real story. Maybe I'll try again when I retire.
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Richard Erskine Frere Leakey is a paleoanthropologist and conservationist. He is second of the three sons of the archaeologists Louis Leakey and Mary Leakey, and is the younger brother of Colin Leakey.