Kipling has always been a favourite with young and old alike. To me, none of the other works that flowed from his enchanted pen were quite as magical as the “Just so Stories”.
I hope I won’t give too much away if I mention just a few of them here. What do you do if you get swallowed by a hungry whale that’s eaten all the fish in the sea? You read the first story. If you read the third story you’d know not to make a Parsee angry. Don’t read the ninth story before the eighth Best Beloved … or it will never make sense. Dog people and Cat people and Horse people alike will enjoy the ‘leventh story. My own favourite story of them all is the story about the Elephant’s child that was ever so curious and ended up with a very long nose (and much spanking) because of all that curiousness.
Each story is sprinkled with words that were half borrowed from the native tongues of the story’s origin and stretched with just a little imagination to make them new and interesting.
The author’s constant lament throughout the book that he was not “allowed” to add any colour to the beautiful illustrations, has been remedied in the latest DP edition of this lovely classic. While the classic text is beautiful all by itself, Mr. Gleeson’s colour illustrations breathe life and joy into this edition that makes it even more enchanting than ever before.
I loved every second of this read, each time I read it again, I love it more.