I didn’t know what to expect when my friend gave me a book about elephants. I must say I was pleasantly surprised! Ernest and his friends are bigger than life and I found myself instantly caring about what happens to them. Ernest taught me a lot about the ways of elephants and now I question why we humans treat them the way we do. A must read for ALL animal lovers! You will laugh and cry and find yourself rooting for the elephants!

Wendy Bell

Through the Eyes of Ernest is a perfectly written tale of what these magnificent creatures go through while in captivity. Ernest tells his story as well as the life stories of his many friends and illustrates the social community that elephants naturally desire and need. This is a phenomenal read for all animal lovers, and for non animal lovers to learn from. Elephants deserve respect that is not naturally given to them by all humans. Absolutely worth the purchase as proceeds go to elephants.

S. Peterson

If your heart is open to the gentleness of animals and their tragic intersection with humanity, Ernest is the elephant to tell you his story. He met tragedy, pain and sorrow at the hands of human keepers. But Ernest and his friend Maggie share the joy and triumph of freedom from their chains at the benevolent, loving hands of human saviors. From brutal mindless captivity to the blissful paradise they found, their story will enlighten and move you. I understand that all proceeds from this book go straight to support compassionate care for elephant preserves. No more captivity for these gentle creatures. This book belongs in every library everywhere.

N Cocuzzi

This story will grab you and take you places you never thought possible. Ernest is a loveable character who seems so real he stands up on the pages. A must read for all animal lovers!

Megan Brannan

This book should be read by everyone interested in our relationships with other animals. It tells a story of elephants, exposing the tragedy of how humans interact with these magnificent creatures. She also shows how we can help them. McFee is a good writer with an interesting and compelling tale. Bravo!


This is a must have book for all animal lovers. Wonderful, heartwarming story that will appeal to readers of all ages. Very well written using the perspective “Through the Eyes of the Elephant, Ernest”. 100% of all proceeds going to support and help elephants in need…

Kevin H.

This is a powerful story the author wrote to illuminate a captive elephant’s life to people, like me, who never thought about it before. In the form of a fictional story, she takes us into the world of zoos and circuses from an elephant’s point of view. And we finally begin to see how powerless and heartbroken these magnificent creatures become when forced to live in confinement and sometimes devastating cruelty.

Ernest is the young elephant we follow from his birth to his adult years. We meet new elephants as well as their human caretakers, some loving and some cruel, as Ernest is transferred from one facility to another. We say goodbye to some, too. The author draws you into their world, which is filled with spiritual depth, kindness and familial love.

Ernest will “make your heart smile” while talking about the importance of “doing elephant things.” While Ernest draws you through the story, it is the author’s portrayal of the matriarch, Eve, which so deeply touched my heart. There are lessons here beyond welfare of elephants.

This book might be too literal for very young children. But what a powerful impact it would have on junior high and high school students to use as a basis for a research project, and hopefully as a catalyst to make a difference in their communities.

Proceeds from buying this book are one way to help. But more important is to read and share it with others so we can all take off our blinders, change our awareness, and make a difference for elephants.


What we humans can learn from Ernest! Debbie McFee has written an informative and well-researched story. A true education in “elephantness.”

Katherine F. Woodward

Though a work of fiction, this story rings true. Through a first person (elephant) narrative, the author brings to light the cruelty and abuse these glorious animals can suffer, and showcases ways in which a reader can assist them in real life. An easy read worthy of passing around.

Awesome, touching story! A must read!

Julie Farrell

Before I read this book, I had no idea about the needs of elephants and their sophisticated societies. Ernest really opened my eyes to the cruelty of zoos and circuses. A loveable character and reliable narrator, I couldn’t put it down! A must read for all animal lovers and non-animal lovers as well. Please purchase a copy as all profits go to Ernest’s friends and relatives.

Jiffy Childress