For some reason, I seem to be reading a lot of books about elephants lately. Big topic, I guess. :-)
But I loved Hannah's Dream by Diane Hammond, even if it is an adult book.
The characters are beautifully realized. I loved the subtle ironies, like how one character's ex-wife keeps accusing him of being deadly boring while he's in the middle of secreting an elephant out of a zoo. There is much to learn from this book on the art of crafting a distinctive voice for each character.
The book is remarkable for a literary adult novel--the characters are likable, and the ending is uplifting.
Plus I could believe in the people Hammond creates and the politics that whorl around Hannah the elephant because of the years Hammond spent as spokesperson for Keiko the Killer Whale.