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The Jungle Book (Barnes & Noble Collectible Editions) based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
The Jungle Book by author Rudyard Kipling is a novel that hides under the guise of a series of playful children’s tales, but, though they do have that quintessential playful quality, The Jungle Book is instead a vividly colorful anthology of beautiful stories that truly capture the vast breadth of a child’s imagination as well as having some strikingly poignant moments and messages littered throughout each tale. The Jungle Book, in contrast to how it is depicted in popular culture, is a series of stories instead of one narrative. A multitude of characters are introduced in the book, but three of said stories revolve around a boy named Mowgli. These tales give a brief but entertaining story of the childhood of a man-cub; out of place in the jungle, Mowgli strives to become regarded a true member of the Seeonee Wolf Pack by following the guidance of the old bear Baloo and with the protection of the black panther Bagheera in a quest to lean the Law of the Jungle, though his human nature often gets in the way of his goal. After these three segments, Rudyard continues the book with tales of equally memorable characters such as Kotick the seal, Rikki-Tikki-Tavi the brave mongoose, and adventurous Little Toomai. I think that each story had a quality that set it apart from the other, and in every tale, Kipling is successful in both building worlds that seem realistic through his effective use of several forms of figurative language as well as making the reader invested in the characters of each story. He masterfully illustrates the feelings and development of characters despite the restrictions on length a short story would have. It certainly is worthwhile to see the growth of young Mowgli, an energetic but foolish boy, to a wise person who is ready to claim his destiny – it almost feels as though you are growing with Mowgli while reading the book. Though Mowgli, I must admit, is the most compelling of the protagonists of the book, it is impossible not to root for the amazing courage and selflessness of Rikki-Tikki-Tavi during his battle with the cobras, and it is hard not to admire Kotick’s perseverance in order to ensure a better future for his kin. The Jungle Book, to add upon what I have just written of, excels in the art of delivering meaningful lessons to the reader in a powerful way. The perseverance of Kotick, the selflessness of Rikki-Tikki-Tavi, and Toomai’s curiosity are important for every child to pick up on, but they are truly important for people of all ages to keep close to their heart. The Jungle Book also addresses the difference between animal and man by indirectly challenging the meaning of the word animal. The Laws of the Jungle reveal the irony of how the beasts of the jungle, who could destroy any man with one fell swoop, keep to their own business while men, who think themselves civilized, hunt down animals for no completely valid reason – we are close to the lawless Bandar-Log. The Jungle Book, at its best, is a stunningly written lucid dream of a childhood – a most beautiful dream, I might add. Perhaps the most powerful part of the journey into Kipling’s jungle is the love that seems to unite humans and animals alike. This quote seems to show that best: “But it is true. He is such a man-cub as never was,” said Baloo. “The best and wisest and boldest of man-cubs—my own pupil, who shall make the name of Baloo famous through all the jungles; and besides, I—we—love him, Kaa.”