The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling
Among the best loved of all classics for children are the tales of Mowgli, the boy who learned the law of the jungle as he grew up among a pack of wolves in India's Seeonee Hills. First published in 1894, the book imagines a child living and flourishing in a community of animals - an idea that perhaps had its origin in Kipling's unhappy childhood. 'His stories are not animal stories in the realistic sense; they are wonderful, beautiful fairy tales, ' wrote Ernest Thompson Seton, the great Canadian naturalist. Kurt Wiese's illustrations, commissoned by the American firm of Doubleday in 1932, have never appeared in Britain before. An artist with a particular interest in animals and an amazing visual memory, he remembered all he had observed on his travels in the Far East during the early 1900s, first as a salesman in China and then as a prisoner-of-war of the Japanese.