Whether it's to read aloud or to be read alone, this is excellent non-fiction for the youngest readers. Both the text and the carefully drawn, four color illustrations make the size and shape distinctions between Indian and African elephants. The evolution of this leftover from pre-history makes up the first part of a short book which then moves o to explain the diet, herd habits, and the maternal drive of female elephants who train the young. The various ways elephants have been used by man through the ages, from regal status symbols to work animals (used by the military in Viet Nam today), is given a lot of space. The last part of the book explodes a couple of the elephant myths-- that they never forget or that they are afraid of mice. The illustrations are of the sort and quality employed by muralists for natural history museums. After dinosaurs, no other non-domestic animal seems both to impress and attract the young to the degree elephants do.