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65 of 66 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the greatest children's books ever - read it!
...The Jungle Book [is] one of the most thrilling and vivid fantasies ever written. Forget about the [...] Disney version, in which Kaa is the baddie, this stuff makes your hair stand on end, it's so alive to what it must feel like to be an animal. Mowgli's arrival at the wolves' cave, pursued by the evil tiger Shere Khan, his upbringing by the wolves, his adventures in...
Published on 24 Jan. 2002 by Amanda Craig

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Jungle Book-Adam Curran
The book contained some very good narratives for each chapter I had read. I enjoyed reading the chapters about a lost boy called Mowgli in the jungle and a Mongoose called Rikky-Tikky-Tidy who was raised by humans. The last two chapters were a bit frustrating for me to figure out what was going on so I didn't enjoy them as I would've hoped they would be. I was also...
Published 8 months ago by Ian and Linda..


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65 of 66 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the greatest children's books ever - read it!, 24 Jan. 2002
By 
Amanda Craig "Amanda Craig" (London United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)   
...The Jungle Book [is] one of the most thrilling and vivid fantasies ever written. Forget about the [...] Disney version, in which Kaa is the baddie, this stuff makes your hair stand on end, it's so alive to what it must feel like to be an animal. Mowgli's arrival at the wolves' cave, pursued by the evil tiger Shere Khan, his upbringing by the wolves, his adventures in the jungle and attempt to go back to living among men is full of savagery and beauty and excitement. Interleaved among the Mowgli stories are other great animal tales - about Rikki Tikki Tavi the mongoose who takes on two deadly cobras living in an Indian garden, and fights them to the death; and about a white seal who finds the one place where seals can be safe.
You do need a bit of patience in the beginning with Kipling, but he's worth it.
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36 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Re-ignites the beauty of story telling, 19 Dec. 2000
By A Customer
Having been of the target age when Disney's enterpritation of the stories of Mowgli game to the big screen I decided to track the source of the magical tale. This book doesn't just contain the stories that follow Mowgli's adventures in the jungle, and quite different to the Disney version they are, but many other exciting tales, everyone captivating for its entirety. Whether it is the moral issues that are raised throughout the stories, or simply the value of a great story that you are after, this book has truely stood the test of time with shining colours.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great short stories, poor formatting, 3 Feb. 2011
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This review is from: The Jungle Book (Kindle Edition)
I hadn't realised until now that The Jungle Book is actually a number of short stories and songs or verses. The most familiar is the first, Mowgli's brothers, about the man cub raised by wolves who has to take on his sworn enemy Shere Khan. The next one is The White Seal. In this story Kotick the seal dedicates himself to searching for a new home for his fellow seals, one where they aren't living with the threat of man. The third is Rikki Tikki Tavi, about a young mongoose of the same name who takes on cobras to protect his adopted human family. Next comes Toomai of the Elephants which relates the experience of a young boy from a long line of elephant handlers who has a unique bond and a one off experience with the elephant his father handles. Finally come Her Majesty's Servants, which recounts the overheard conversation of a group of Army animals.

The language in places is archaic, and elsewhere exotic, reflecting the settings of the stories and Kipling's background. Throughout the stories the animals are given human traits and the tales are moral stories, reflections on human society or both. I don't think they would be an easy read for a young person primarily because of the language used, particularly in Mowgli's Brothers, but they do make wonderful stories I fully plan on reading my little girl when she's bigger. There are parts that might make some people uncomfortable, such as Mowgli's killing of Shere Khan and the aftermath, so I'd urge caution if you are thinking of these stories for very young children.

I particularly enjoyed Rikki Tikki Tavi, as the mongoose hero is such a lovely, funny character, and the conversation between the Army animals, as they discuss their different fears and strengths is wonderful. I have no doubt I will be going back to The Jungle Book and dipping into the stories on their own rather than reading them all in one go, and no doubt I'll be looking to add more Kipling to my kindle. A note of warning though - the free version is very poorly formatted, with no clear breaks between the stories and verses which I found confusing when I didn't expect it to be more than one story, and will make navigating in future more difficult. If formatting is a bugbear for you I'd suggest getting another version.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Treasure, 2 Dec. 2010
By 
Roy Norris (Madrid, Spain) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Jungle Book (Hardcover)
My nine-year-old daughter is in the scouts and wanted to read this. We both chose this version on the strength of the illustrations we saw in the Look Inside feature, and we weren't disappointed. It's a weighty book and a challenging read for a nine-year-old, but its size and weight together with the quality of the illustrations have led her to say 'This is my treasure'. It's clearly very special to her. She loves curling up with it on the sofa, reads it whenever she can and loves talking about it. Definitely a good choice.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kipling's Masterful Storytelling, History, and Modern Mythology Come Together, 15 Sept. 2009
Legends are made from legends. Rudyard Kipling dug deep into the tales of the jungle from his years living in India, and drew from them the kinds of stories that live forever.

"The Jungle Book" is more than how Mowgli, the man cub, learns to live and survive amongst enemies like Shere Khan. The intense mongoose vs cobra "Rikki-Tikki-Tavi," also well-known, is here, as are several lesser-known and unrelated adventures.

Richly written, with details and contexts unfamiliar to Western readers, "The Jungle Book" lifts imagination and language beautifully. Poetic, and written in a literary style, it shines above most modern prose.

This is the stuff of afternoon stories read to older boys and girls. Young teens will while away rainy evenings, unwilling to part until finished. Sometimes scary and always exciting, Kipling also uses the book to teach lessons much greater than a jungle in India.

When chapters were first read to me many years ago, I listened gawk-eyed, listening intently for as long as my mother would read. I read it with different eyes now, but no less a young boy as I worry how Baloo will handle the Bandar-Log monkeys.

It isn't perfect. A few scientific details are fudged (wolf pack breeding structure, for example), but nothing that matters in the big picture. Kipling will have you in the palm of his hand, even though it was first published over 100 years ago.

May "The Jungle Book" by Rudyard Kipling be as amazing to you as it has been to me.

--Brockeim
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38 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Undeservedly unfashionable - a true, timeless classic, 9 Feb. 2006
By 
Kipling has long since ceased to be a fashionable writer. Accused of being racist (for his time, class and background he was in fact highly liberal in his views) and jingoistic (he lived the days when loyalty to Queen and Country was still called patriotism), he has fallen out of favour with the literati. Despite decades of continual snubbing, his books live on and his poem, IF was recently voted by the British public as their favourite, unashamedly sentimental it may seem now but it still stands as some of the best advice a father could give to his son, which was how and why it came to be.
His books also have that ultimate mark of any classic, the ability to be enjoyed as much by grown-ups as by children. The jungle book is most probably familiar to the world now through the Disney cartoon, which bears all the relationship to the original book as Muppet Treasure Island does to Robert Louis Stevenson. The real book is much darker, much more dangerous, much more exciting and much, much more enjoyable. Kipling takes anthropomorphism to its artistic ultimate and, within the cadre of jungle animals reflects human characteristics both good and bad: the sagacity of Baloo, the wisdom of Bagheera, the nobility of Akela, the independence of Kaa, the rottenness of Shere Khan and the mindless brutality of the Dhole. Humans, by contrast, fare rather poorly being divorced from their surroundings and, unlike the jungle characters, are shallow and act with neither motivation beyond self-interest nor principle.
So impressed was Lord Baden Powell that he made this book the basis for the cub scouts (as he did with another of Kipling's masterpieces, Kim for the scouts themselves). The books may contain Victorian values, but these are the best of Victorian values and the ones that define a civilized society, even if they, like Kipling, have become unfashionable. Above all though, the Jungle Book is a ripping yarn, a page-turner, a plot-boiler and, uniquely amongst Kipling's prolific output, a spawner of sequels; something that Walt Disney obviously recognised. The only words of warning or discouragement that I would utter is that the book, as with all the Mowgli stories, can be quite sinister and not suitable for the same age range as the cartoon and, speaking of the cartoon, be prepared to despise its fluffy, trite Americanised bowdlerisms forever once you have read the original; so, if you adore Disney and want to go on loving it, perhaps you should stay away from the literature from which it stole its ideas.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Man's red flower!, 7 Dec. 2007
"Man goes to man, in the end." Poignant, endearing, at times brutal, The Jungle Book pressed all my buttons.

As a young child who loved and adored all the Disney animated classics, particularly The Jungle Book, once I found out it had actually originated from a book, it was a must read, especially from such an esteemed writer. The book however is much more in depth and fulfilling than the animated cartoon. It charts Mowgli through his adventures in the jungle and his rise to friend and master of all in his domain. Along the way Kipling breaks off for exciting forays into other animal kingdoms and environments other than just the jungle, giving a real mixed bag of wonderful images resonating in the mind, from seal and Innuit, to a mongoose and elephant, there is plenty of variety that kept me entertained.
What particularly impressed me, was the way Kipling managed to muscle a meaningful short story into individual chapters, without leaving me with a sense I hadn't gotten to know the characters.

I really loved this book, and would definitely recommenend it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This is the hour of pride and power, 12 Mar. 2010
By 
A. Willard (Kent, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I bought this book years ago for my kids to read (or for me to read to my kids), and somehow neither they nor I ever got around to it. They won't read it now (it's all Harry Potter and Twilight...) so, as I'm ashamed to admit I've never actually read any Kipling, I decided to read it instead. I rather enjoyed it and I will certainly look out for some more.

Of course it's not like the cartoon - I didn't expect it to be - in fact it comes from a completely different viewpoint; there's nothing cosy and Disneyfied about this, but rather something primitive, a barely restrained savagery; Mowgli is still in very real danger from Shere Khan, but that danger runs very much in the opposite direction as well. `Feet that make no noise; eyes that can see in the dark; ears that can hear the wind in their lair, and sharp white teeth.'

The Mowgli stories are the best, `Rikki-tikki-tavi' is also pretty good but `Her Majesty's Servants' kind of lets the side down at the end. Still well worth a read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Kipling's Fables, 22 Aug. 2011
This review is from: The Jungle Book (Kindle Edition)
"The Jungle Book" is a collection of stories (or fables) and songs/poems by Rudyard Kipling, and was originally published in 1894. The book consists of 7 short stories, separated by seven poems. The first three stories involve Mowgli, but the other four stories are not part of that series, nor do they all take place in the same jungle or any jungle at all. What these stories do have in common is the anthropomorphizing of animals as characters in these stories. As with all fables, these stories impart a moral message to the reader.

"Mowgli's Brothers" is the first story in the book and was originally published in January of 1894 in "St. Nicholas Magazine". The story is about Mowgli being adopted by the wolf family which then raises him. With Shere Khan hunting in their area of the jungle, the Father Wolf (Akela) and the mother (Raksha) find and take in a human baby. At the wolf council, Baloo speaks for the cub, and Bagheera buys his life with a fresh kill. As time passes, Shere Khan turns most of the wolves against Mowgli, and they plot to overthrow Akela as the leader. Mowgli is then sent away from the wolves, vowing to return with Shere Khan's hide. This story is followed by the "Hunting-Song of the Seeonee Pack".

"Kaa's Hunting" is a short study from March-April of 1894. It takes place sometime during the period covered in "Mowgli's Brothers", though it isn't mentioned in that story. It is a story about Mowgli's abduction by monkees, a.k.a the Bandar-log. Baloo and Bagheera, rescue Mowgli with the aid of Kaa. This story is followed by the "Road Song of the Bandar-Log".

"Tiger! Tiger!" was a short story published in February of 1894 in magazines before being published in this collection. This covers the confrontation between Mowgli and Shere Khan. Mowgli has been kicked out of the jungle and has been adopted by a couple who believe he is Nathoo, the child that they lost. Mowgli tries to fit in, but he alienates himself from the others because he doesn't accept their misconceptions about the jungle. Shere Khan returns and is plotting to kill Mowgli, but he is warned by one of his wolf friends (Grey Brother) whom he goes to visit regularly. Mowgli comes up with a plan to kill Shere Khan, but when successful he gets into an argument with Buldeo, the hunger. Buldeo tries to take Shere Khan's skin, but Mowgli refuses to give it to him, so Buldeo turns the entire village against him and Mowgli finds himself an outcast of both the jungle and the village. This story is followed by "Mowgli's Song".

"The White Seal" is a short story published in August of 1893. The story is about Kotick, a rare white-furred seal who spends his life searching for a home where seals will not be hunted by humans. He is isolated from the other seals by his goal, but he finally discovers a place that the Sea Cows know which is free from man. This story is followed by "Lukannon".

"Rikki-Tikki-Tavi" is a story from November of 1893. In this story an English family save a young mongoose (Rikki Tikki) who becomes their pet. Rikki Tikki first saves the families young boy Teddy from a dust brown snakeling. Rikki Tikki takes to patrolling the house while the family sleeps, and it is during this that he is warned by Chuchundra that there are two cobras (Nag and Nagaina) that are planning to kill the family. Rikki Tikki first takes on Nag, waking the father who kills Nag. Nagaina then swears vengeance, but Rikki Tikki gets help from Darzee (a tailor bird) and locates Nagainaj's nest and then uses the eggs to distract Nagaina to save Teddy again. This story is followed by "Darzee's Chant".

"Toomai of the Elephants" is a short story from the December of 1893. In this story little Toomai is told that he cannot be an elephant handler unless he sees the dance of the elephants. When the great elephant Kala Nag hears the call of the elephant from far off in the jungle, he goes to find the elephants, taking little Toomai with him. This story is followed y "Shiv and the Grasshopper".

"Her Majesty's Servants" was originally published in March of 1894. This story is about the various animals used to support Her Majesty's armed forces in India. The animals discuss their roles in the army, each taking pride in the function they perform. This is followed by "Parade-Song of the Camp Animals" which closes out the book.

This is a good collection of short stories, though there is a definite variability in the quality, and of course they don't all take place in the jungle. Rudyard Kipling wrote poems, short stories, and novels. Having lived in India, England, and the United States, and also spent a fair amount of time in South Africa. He drew on the rich cultural history that he enjoyed to create some wonderful tales. He remains one of the best known writers of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. "The Jungle Book" is one of his best known works, though most know it through films which do not accurately represent the stories within. It blends his short fiction with some of his poems, but I find it a bit too uneven to give it five-stars.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A classic book, 11 Oct. 2012
By 
Mole "Mole" (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Jungle Book (Kindle Edition)
The Jungle Book is well known as a title, but the majority of people have probably never read it; it's much more likely that they will know the story from having seen the cartoon film of the same name by Walt Disney. The book is actually a series of short stories of which the story of Mowlgli is the first; there are number of other stories that are included, of which "Rikki Tikki Tavi" is a perennial favourite.

The book can seem a little dated; it was written over a hundred years ago and the language and attitudes reflect those of the time. However, the book is still very readable and contains some wonderful images of animal behaviour when seen through the eyes of human realtionships. Rudyard Kipling was a great writer and this book was aimed at educating and entertaining children and it does that in a very straight forward way. It's also noticecable that some of the ideas in the book could be seen from the view of an environmentalist trying to encourage people to think about what is happening in the world.

I found that the Kindle version was not quite as well partitioned as I would have liked; the various sectiosn run into one another without having an obvious break. This can be a little confusing, although it doesn't spoil it too much.

I would suggest that if you are a parent with young children and wnat something suitable to read to them before bedtime, this book could something that they will learn to love and enjoy for many years.
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The Jungle Book
The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling (Hardcover - 1 Aug. 2006)
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