Marlena Frank's Reviews > The Jungle Books

The Jungle Books by Rudyard Kipling
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's review
Jan 25, 2011

liked it

I was recommended this book by a good friend whenever I was going to be on a flight to Boston for an hour and a half. I'm not a terribly quick reader, and it took me a bit to get into the story, but once I started it was great. I got pulled into Mowgli's struggles and battles, the description of the animals and the jungle itself.

I grew up on the Mel Brooks' Riki Tiki Tavi and Mowgli's Brothers so I was kind of expecting the very unique experience Kipling had to offer. However I hadn't expected his interpretation of people to be so off. The contrast of the British from the local natives is rather odd, but understandable for the times. The lady in the village that Mowgli gets to know just seems so simple and flat to me. It felt like Kipling kept trying to endear his readers to the humans, but I just didn't feel it.

Typically I enjoy books that jump around to different topics when you go through it, but the sudden jump from the hot jungle to the icy tundra was a bit strange to me. It's like a vignette within the book, and is rather distracting. I enjoyed both stories, but it just made the overall theme of the book more difficult to understand, seeing as there was no introduction to it or any real relation to the main plot.

Overall the book has some really good parts, typically the fight scenes are beautifully written. The description of movement and allegiance is wonderfully crafted. But whenever Mowgli is just by himself without the guidance of Kaa, Baloo, or even Baghera, the book can get quite slow.

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