There's a pride of every kind of denizen (even the hyrax or zorilla) in this luxuriantly tenanted and nicely descriptive story of Kenya, near Nairobi, where Karen, just twelve, grows up with ambitions, perhaps to be a game warden or perhaps to be just like Joy Adamson with ""a pet like Elsa."" At least a fierce and furry animal. Maybe a leopard like the purring one she spots in a tree. There are a series of exciting encounters -- one leopard is attacked by baboons; another, or is it the same, is trapped and taken to the park; and while Karen searches for hers only to spot her cubs, she is trapped on a ledge with vultures and hyenas around and about, to be saved by their dog Ajax before she returns home happily with the two cubs. But it's the jungle that presides over everything -- with the menace behind the rustle of the lank grass and the dense activity overhead and underfoot lending a pictorial realism.