One's initial impression of this book is that it is, perhaps, too artistically perfect to lead one to expect a substantial text. Actually, the text approaches the excellence of the illustrations in the story of a village boy in Hindustani, of the life and activity of his village, and of the friendship between the boy and the great elephant, pride of the village. Drought came and the monsoons on which the people counted failed to come; hunger, thirst, failing crops, starved beasts combined to make them accept the opportunity to rent out Moti, the elephant. And then Arnu decided to follow him and so was introduced to the new India of engineering projects and hopes of controls of the water which was the lifeblood. The Loudens have caught the spirit of the land at a moment of impact of new on old. The pictures have more of beauty than of reality- but they make a lovely book.