As if viewed with a telescopic lens, Mr. Milotte describes the life of animals in and around the Mzima Springs in Africa; he focuses on Masiki Moja, a toto, or baby ippopotamus. He follows the giant mud wallower from big-sized babyhood through an attack by a crocodile (thus his African name which means ""one ear""), the descent of locusts, a raging flood, on to peaceful adulthood. Much information concerning various animals' instincts and habits is presented in the extremely readable text. Although he writes about a particular hippo, the author has not given him any strange or peculiar characteristics; therefore the book is mainly factual and animals remain strictly animals, untamed and fierce in their natural habitat. Numerous instructive, accurate pencil sketches complement the text.