The Teachers’ Guide to accompany Wild Spirits by Rosa Jordon.
Eleven-year-old Danny Ryan and 19-year-old Wendy Marshall think their friendship is only about looking after two baby raccoons that Danny has rescued. But when a bank holdup upsets Wendy so much that she can hardly stand to be around people, she leaves her job as a teller, retreats to a farm, and surrounds herself with injured and orphaned wildlife. Danny, neglected at home and considered weird in a town where other boys are into hunting, finds peace on the farm, too, plus excitement, as he and Wendy adopt ever more exotic animals such as llamas, bobcats, a serval, an ocelot, and a blind lynx.
Over time the two friends develop a bond that goes beyond care of the animals to caring for each other. As it turns out, Wendy rescues not just wildlife but Danny, as well. What’s more, the bank robbers are still at large and still a threat, and Danny, now 14, must act to save Wendy’s life.