My Wild Life
by Jimmy Chipperfield

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ISBN Number: 333180445
Hardback with dustjacket
Number of Pages:
Publication Date:
Macmillan London Limited

A life spent finding new ways to entertain people has made Jimmy Chipperfield's name a household word.

This enthralling autobiography is rich in the lore of the twin worlds where he is at home: the animal kingdom, and the circus ring. Foremost comes his vast experience of animal life both wild and tame - lions, tigers, giraffes, baboons, hippos, chimpanzees, horses (not many other people have led a helplessly drunk elephant down Piccadilly on New Year's Day!) He has captured animals in savannah and desert, bought them, sold them, trained them - and let them loose again. And although he knows the pleasure they can give, he would never treat them with anything less than total respect, for he also knows the tragedy that casual handling can cause.

But he knows about people too. Born into his father's travelling show, Jimmy went through the hard school of one-day tenting, where the handful of family members doubled as ringmasters, clowns, acrobats, animal trainers, musicians and tent-hands. And when he eventually built the circus up into the biggest ever seen in Europe (and probably in the world), he found he needed all his skills and more when it came to sorting out the problems and rivalries of miserable clowns and timid human cannonballs.

Then, one day when the Big Show was at its height, he cut loose again: and his search for new worlds to conquer gave him a starling and epoch-making idea. The safari parks which he invented, and set up - against heavy opposition - in partnership with the owners of stately homes, have spread all over the globe. Now he heads a close-knit family and an international organisation; and not once has he watered down his father's unshakeable principles of hard work, honesty and generosity.

My Wild Life is simple, yet fascinatingly written, and stuffed with memorable stories. Anyone who loves animals, or humans, or both, will read it for sheer enjoyment.

Condition: Fine, in fine dustjacket (click image to see close-up of the condition of the book).

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