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Philadelphia writer and pet tortoise overcome adversity, find happiness with "Tortoise Goes to the Vet"

"Tortoise Goes to the Vet": Philadelphia writer and pet tortoise overcome adversity
"Tortoise Goes to the Vet": Philadelphia writer and pet tortoise overcome adversity 02:06

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- A new children's book by a Philadelphia writer about overcoming adversity is being published. This hero with a hard shell had a disability and the writer is dealing with cancer.

But together they're overcoming these hardships and hoping to inspire others.

It's a slow walk to fame for this tortoise named Radha.

"Her personality is amazing," Pari Docktor said.

Docktor who lives in Rittenhouse Square admits having a pet tortoise is unusual, but she said Radha is smart and loving.

Radha the tortoise CBS News Philadelphia

"She's very playful," Docktor said.

And now she's about to be famous.

"The book is about Radha," she said. "Tortoise Goes to the Vet."

It's a true story about Radha, who had a deformed beak that interfered with eating. It was getting it fixed that inspired the book.

"Though she had that kind of deformity she's still gorgeous and beautiful," Docktor said.

Radha's beak still isn't perfect but she's thriving. That's the message Docktor wants to share in the children's book she wrote and illustrated.

"You're OK the way you are," she said. "Be happy with what you have."

It's a lesson Docktor is learning herself now having been diagnosed with tongue cancer.

"I was having difficulty eating just like Radha was," she said.

Together they're learning to live with adversity and finding happiness.

CBS News Philadelphia

"She makes me understand how much more beautiful the world is," Docktor said.

It's all about finding ways to overcome the obstacles of life. Sharing a message of hope with an unlikely hero.

Docktor will be reading her book at CHOP on Friday. A message that she hopes patients and parents there take to heart.

The book is available on Amazon and at Barnes & Noble.

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