Title: Just So Stories
Author: Rudyard Kipling
Page Count: 201
Just So Stories is a collection of short stories about animals and man. But the stories mostly surround animals. There are 12 stories with a poem at the end of each story.
How the Whale Got His Throat | Rating: 3/5
A whale who swallows a mariner and his raft but then gets hiccups and has to let the mariner go. But the raft remains inside of him by the mariners suspenders so now the whale can only eat small fish.
How the Camel Got His Hump | Rating: 2/5
A camel who does not want to do any work and replies to everyone with “Humph” so he is given a hump and forced to work and make up for his missed days of work.
How the Rhinoceros Got His Skin | Rating: 3/5
A Rhinoceros who eats a Parsee’s cake. A few weeks later the Rhinoceros takes off his skin by the buttons underneath and bathed. The Parsee filled the skin with stale cakes and when the Rhinoceros puts the skin back on it tickles. He rolls around and rubs it until the buttons come off and then is stuck with wrinkly skin.
How the Leopard Got His Spots | Rating: 2/5
The story of how a Leopard gets his spots after being able to blend in with the sandy-colored plateau.
The Elephant’s Child | Rating: 3/5
An elephant who originally had a short nose, which he could not use to grasp things. He went into the river where a crocodile told him to come closer and then grabbed Elephant by the nose and as he resisted his nose was pulled into a long trunk.
The Sing-Song of Old Man Kangaroo | Rating: 3/5
A Kangaroo who attempts to ask Little God Nqa and Middle God Nquing to make him different but they sent him away. When Kangaroo asks Big God Nqong, Nqong brought Yellow Dog Dingo, who chased the Kangaroo all over Australia until his legs ached and he hopped across a river with his hind legs and that brought his permanent change.
The Beginning of the Armadillos | Rating: 3/5
The story of how a hedgehog and a tortoise become an armadillo to save themselves from the Jaguar.
How the First Letter was Written | Rating: 3/5
The story of how Taffy, a young girl, draws a picture for a stranger man who doesn’t speak her language, so he can take it to her mother so that he may fetch the other spear that Taffy and their father need to fish.
How the Alphabet was Made | Rating: 3/5
Taffy yet again and how her drawing in the story How the First Letter was Written, was misinterpreted by her mother. Taffy and her father use sounds, facial expressions and objects to create pictures which form letters of the alphabet.
The Crab That Played with the Sea | Rating: 1/5
The story of how a Magician created the Earth and the Sea and then all the animals and finally man. He told the animals to obey man but the Crab got away.
The Cat That Walked by Himself | Rating: 3/5
The story of a cat who is wise and sits in the shadows waiting to make a deal with the woman in the cave.
The Butterfly That Stamped | Rating: 1/5
The story about King Solomon and how his wife Balkis tells the wife butterfly how to make the palace disappear and then re-appear by stamping.
This collection of stories was better than The Jungle Book but not by much. My favorite story was The Beginning of the Armadillos, I thought it was a really cute story and I enjoyed reading it. Overall, I just think that Rudyard Kipling is not an author that I want to read more from. I think that maybe children will like his stories but I’m not a huge fan. All the illustrations were done by Kipling himself but they were really difficult to see, since they are so dark.