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The Jungle Books

really liked it 4.0  ·  Rating Details ·  70,121 Ratings  ·  843 Reviews
Rudyard Kipling had never visited the jungles of Central India, yet his descriptions have a breathtaking imaginative power; and in Mowgli, the boy who grows up among wolves, he created one of the most popular and enduring of modern literary myths. Mowgli's companions and enemies include such unforgettable creatures as Shere Khan the tiger and Bagheera the black panther; fr ...more
Paperback, Penguin Modern Classics, 384 pages
Published February 1st 1990 by Penguin Books (first published 1895)
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Jesse Haubert "The Jungle Books" is one book containing "The Jungle Book" and "The Second Jungle Book". "The Jungle Book" contains "The Jungle Book" without the…more"The Jungle Books" is one book containing "The Jungle Book" and "The Second Jungle Book". "The Jungle Book" contains "The Jungle Book" without the sequel. (less)
Edvin Tønder 14. Although some variations occur in different editions as they one way or another function as stand-alone stories.

Community Reviews

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Jul 24, 2008 Joseph rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Once again, I'm struck by the savagery that resonates throughout Kipling's writing. It would be so easy to think of The Jungle Book in a more Disney-fied light: talking animals, singing, the rhythmic cadences of a fairy tale or lullaby. But overarching all that is the ever-present reminder that the world of the jungle is a world of nature, red in tooth and claw. Mowgli is raised by wolves and instructed by Baloo for the explicit purpose of survival in a harsh world that actively seeks his d
Yeah, yeah, ignore the White Man's Burden stuff. Kipling is one of the best storytellers who ever lived, and neither the author's obnoxious politics nor a complete butchery of this wonderful wonderful story in its many terrible movie incarnations can take away the fact that the Mowgli stories of this and the Second Jungle Book are some of the greatest tales ever created. Read this, for real. It's a classic.
Luke Taylor
Aug 08, 2016 Luke Taylor rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So what is The Jungle Book?

A mosaic of man-cub-centric proverbs, draped in prose as leafy and antiquated as old growth jungle vines, dappled with splashes of whimsical imagination and flecks of the mud and dirt of colonialist attitudes and appetites, it truly is a far cry from the classic and much beloved Disney movie of the same name.

Which, I for one, wore out my VHS copy because I watched it so much. (Back in the day, Beauty and the Beast was my other Disney fave, if you must know.)

And, readin
Nov 16, 2016 James rated it really liked it
Whilst I think it is important to note and be aware of Rudyard Kipling’s acknowledged support for imperialism and colonialism when reading any of his works – these aren’t themes which I found to be particularly evident let alone prevalent throughout this book. Whilst we may find his politics distasteful at best and abhorrent at worst, I do think it is valid to judge a book (or any other work of art) outside of and standing alone from the artists political / moral beliefs – more specifically and ...more
Nov 23, 2008 Rachel rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: kids who like adventure stories
I read this to Nick because I read it myself as a first grader. (Yes, I was a precocious reader.) Since I haven't even glanced at it in the quarter century of intervening years, it was interesting to come back to it.

In some ways I was disappointed as an adult reader. The formal, quasi-Elizabethan language the animals use to talk to each other struck me as pretentious, which I don't believe was at all my original reaction. There was that almost total lack of female characters that is almost inev
Mar 20, 2016 Shaun rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jungle Books… I was really iffy coming in whether I’d like this; never read Kipling before. At my favorite bookstore, I saw that they had one of the Reader’s Digest books that I love so much, but my dad said he had an old copy of this book, so I went ahead and went with the old copy (chiefly because it was free to me). Contrary to what I thought, it was more a collection of short stories than one contiguous tale, though Mowgli featured in several of them, and it chronically various episodes in h ...more
Jun 20, 2016 Eze rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Simplemente perfecto, de principio a final. Es una edición maravillosa y super completa con hasta el ultimo detalle.
Todos los cuentos del libro son únicos y te dejan algo diferente, aunque hay algunos que disfrute mas que otros. Lo único que me dejo con un sabor raro en la boca fue el apéndice del final que no me convenció mucho pero al parecer fue lo primero que el autor escribió sobre Mowgli, lo que tiene mucho sentido, por ende lo perdonamos.

Si vos esperas en este libro encontrar la película
Feb 16, 2012 Ensiform rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, india, animals
A series of stories, mostly but not always set in India. I did not know when I first picked this up that not all of these tales feature the most famous character: Mowgli, the baby carried off by a lame tiger and rescued by wolves, who grows to be master of the jungle. (In this, he predates Tarzan by a couple of decades.) I remember reading some, but not all, of this book many years ago, but I remembered little of it, especially from the second book.

Some of the tales are well-known ("Rikki-Tikki-
Jul 08, 2014 Alex rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review covers both the first and second Jungle Books, which are included in this edition. These included a lot of material which surprised me.

I was not aware how much Disney altered the original material. Mowgli is so much more than a whiny git. Kipling's Mowgli is very much a proto-Conan. Kipling is more of a master of the action scene than Robert E. Howard, and the influence seems clear to me. Another clear influence is the discussion of civilization versus barbarism within the Jungle Bo
I REALLY don't like this edition. One of the things I liked about the versions I read as a child was that the cover was nondescript. The picture on the cover (photography credited to William Dow/CORBUS) is disturbing. I don't care for the abuse of tigers in the Mowgli stories. Shere Khan (named, by the way, after a Mughal emperor) is vilified, slandered, and murdered without compunction. This is not only a threat to the few surviving tigers--it's part of a general imperialist slander against any ...more
Oct 23, 2012 Amy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The first time I met Mowgli was when I was very small. I must have been only around two years old and I had watched the Disney film. I HATED it. But when I realized that it was based off of a book (when I was around five or six) I immediately went to the library and checked out both Jungle Books. It was then that I fell in love.
Kipling is very problematic racially and politically. Throughout these books it is easy to pick up on Kipling's inherent prejudice. Through Mowgli the reader is introduce
Walter Cholewczynski
A great collection of stories, of which the Mowgli stories are the best. Kipling writes about the jungle world with great respect for the natural knowledge of the animal inhabitants from whom Mowgli learns more than many do from their human teachers.
Jason McIntosh
Mar 22, 2013 Jason McIntosh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
really a beautiful collection of stories. Though the book somehow leaves out the inclusion of Baloo singing "the Bear Necessities" ... a gross oversight in my opinion.
Gina Johnson
May 24, 2017 Gina Johnson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Read this to the kids and we all really enjoyed it. I think I liked the stories that weren't actually jungle stories (one about a white seal and a few others) more than the kids did but they all really enjoyed the stories about Mowgli. AO year 3 scheduled read.
Jan 27, 2014 Aaron rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: form-i
When I was little, I was read this book by my mother. It was a red book with gold lettering, and it still sits on my bookshelf. Still intact, still with its bright red color and its shining gold lettering. Yet I can't remember the book itself... I remember the feel of the cover; the almost rough surface felt pleasant between my two hands... Yet still, I can't remember reading it. I hope to read it again someday, but for now I will just imagine the golden lettering and the bright gold letters. Th ...more
Jaycee Lam
Jul 28, 2013 Jaycee Lam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novels
Vì mình đọc bản Việt nên mình sẽ review bằng tiếng Việt.

Chuyện Rừng Xanh là một quyển sách thú vị. Mình rất thích câu chuyện của Mowgli dù cho nó có khác với phiên bản của của Disney, Mowgli của bác Rudyard Kipling rắn rỏi và linh động hơn cậu nhóc hay hờn dỗi của Disney rất nhiều.

Hai nhân vật Baloo và Bagheera vẫn là hai nhân vật yêu thích của mình dù là trong phim hay truyện, cả hai đều thể hiện được tình bạn sâu sắc của hai con vật đối với cậu bé loài người *chấm nước mắt*.

Bagheera, mình đã
Before Tarzan there was Mowgli, lost in a jungle in India as a child and taken in by a family of wolves. He is raised by the animals of the jungle, and has adventures with them. He learns loyalty and devotion and the Jungle Law. Every small boy eventually grows up but, to pararphrase Kipling, his adult adventures are a different story. Written in 1894 and 1895 the two collections of adventure/jungle/wilderness stories are included in one volume. Mowgli and his stories are the vast majority, but ...more
Jan 21, 2012 Janice rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this as a "I need to be culturally literate" read. I enjoyed about 2/3rds of this. And to be honest, had to force myself through the other 1/3. Glad I read it but glad it is done.
John Yelverton
Jul 31, 2011 John Yelverton rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A classic children's story that everyone should read at some point in their lives.
Alessandra JJ
Finalizando a leitura do Livro da Selva
George Kearse
Jun 23, 2017 George Kearse rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I haven't quite finished this book yet, but I fell in love with it quite quickly and I think it's going to stay that way. An absolute timeless masterpiece that despite its age (over 120 years old) is still captivating readers today, no less myself. I've been completely hooked on the various adventures of Mowgli and his animal friends since page 1, and would fondly recommend this wonderful book to any avid reader who hasn't yet had the pleasure of reading it.

Just one word of advice - don't open i
Sarahjoy Maddeaux
Jan 30, 2017 Sarahjoy Maddeaux rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Softwear
I'm glad I read this. I was prompted to do so after watching the new movie, in order to learn which movie was closest to the original stories. It turns out that both have their similarities and differences.

The characters are all stronger in the original books: Kipling is not afraid of making his characters unlikeable - perhaps especially Mowgli himself, who lords it over the animals in the jungle with unpleasant cockiness. But I liked his Kaa better than the evil snake in both films, and his wis
Mar 23, 2017 Dee rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Aaaaah why did no one tell me that "The Jungle Books" actually consists of 15 books?! So here I am, 6 months later.... I am not surprised that "The Jungle Book", actually titled "Mowgli's Brothers" is the most widely known out of the series- it is easily the best one. The rest alternated between entertaining to downright dull but the others I liked were "Rikki-Tikki-Tavi", "Toomai of the Elephants", and "Her Majesty's Servants". So a good collection of some of Kipling's best known works but I do ...more
Dianelisse Pérez
Solo un cuento de todos los que tiene el libro me ha gustado realmente, y es el que mas cerca esta de ser una fábula. Muy bien escrito, con buenos temas, mas sin embargo, vago. Todo me pareció muy vago incluso la historia de Mowgli :((
Nicholas Karpuk
In a really roundabout way, Kipling is responsible for you crying at Bambi (I didn't cry, I was just confused. The subtlety of the gunshot of camera didn't register. I spent the rest of the movie thinking Bambi's dad had gained sole custody. I was kind of stupid kid sometimes.) The Jungle Book is one of the early popular cases where an author so thoroughly anthropomorphosized animals.

It's really a smug assumption that fits well with the British imperial mindset of the book. In a position of safe
Katrina Southern
I have been in the mood to read 'The Jungle Book' for a long, long time and this mood increased tenfold when I watched the live-action film in the cinema recently. I have to say that the book wasn't at all what I expected! Firstly, I had no idea that 'The Jungle Book' was actually a collection of short stories rather than one long one. I also had new idea that 'The Second Jungle Book' existed, and as it turned out, I was actually reading 'The Jungle Books' which was both collections together. I ...more
Dec 28, 2011 Peter rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: grown up children and childlike adults

(view spoiler)
David Caldwell
I only came across volume 2 in my local library.

This is not the Disney version. There is bloodshed and killing, but it is the violence of nature. In Rikki-Tikki-Tavi, you have the young moongoose fighting the king cobras that had ruled the garden before he came. In The White Seal, seals fight for their spot in the breeding grounds and hunters culling some of the "bachelor seals". This isn't violence for the sake of violence though. It is just a fact of real life.In both of the stories it is off
Free Willie
Oct 14, 2016 Free Willie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
William ostermeyer
October 14 2016
The jungle book review by rudyard Kipling
The quick run down of this book is that a little boy mowgoli is abandoned by his parents and father wolf finds in the wilderness alone he wants to raise him but a tiger by the name of shear khan wants to eat the boy but father wolf won’t let him. Father wolf is old though so he give mowgoli to a bear called ballo to raise him. A little later on when he grows up he comes back to the wolf camp and they want to
Laura Bowman
I wanted to like The Jungle Books more than I did. I think the biggest force against my enjoyment of the books was the structure. Kipling definitely has a knack for painting the scene in your mind, however, and I was able to read through it all, albiet, slower than I normally get through a book. Granted, my edition includes both the first and the second Jungle Books, so I ingested it all as one. As such, my review encompasses both.

Knowing Kipling to be a literary man, I tried to read deeply into
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Joseph Rudyard Kipling was a journalist, short-story writer, poet, and novelist.

Kipling's works of fiction include The Jungle Book (1894), Kim (1901), and many short stories, including The Man Who Would Be King (1888). His poems include Mandalay (1890), Gunga Din (1890), The Gods of the Copybook Headings (1919), The White Man's Burden (1899), and If— (1910). He is regarded as a major innovator in
More about Rudyard Kipling...

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“I will remember what I was, I am sick of rope and chains -
I will remember my old strength and all my forest affairs.
I will not sell my back to man for a bundle of sugar cane;
I will go out to my own kind, and the wood-folk in their lairs.
I will go out until the day, until the morning break -
Out to the wind's untainted kiss, the water's clean caress;
I will forget my ankle-ring and snap my picket stake.
I will revisit my lost love and playmates masterless!”
“A black shadow dropped down into the circle. It was Bagheera the Black Panther, inky black all over, but with the panther markings showing up in certain lights like the pattern of watered silk. Everybody knew Bagheera, and nobody cared to cross his path, for he was as cunning as Tabaqui, as bold as the wild buffalo, and as reckless as the wounded elephant. But he had a voice as soft as wild honey dripping from a tree, and a skin softer than down.” 42 likes
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