Babar and the serenely pastoral country around Celesteville are back, with a new daughter's early years and misdemeanors. The other elephant children are delighted with Isabelle, the admired youngest in a loving family. After precociously learning to walk, she's the one who engineers the escape of a turtle caught under a hippopotamus. Rescuing a cat is the occasion of her first careless AWOL; chided by bet father, the king. she soon forgets. This time, she wanders further afield, into the Blue Valley, where she meets two debonair but indeterminate animals, named Boover and Picardee, who share a mansion. They spend a day playing together--poker, jazz--but later, when they settle down for TV, they see Babar reporting Isabelle's disappearance. So they take her home, by hang glider, and the siblings don't believe a word of it; but Babar and Celeste welcome her with open arms and no reproaches. If this were the first Babar book, what would we make of it? It's hard to say; perhaps its world, where events may be tragic (the first book caused a controversy because Babar's mother was shot by a hunter), but kindness and order are the norm, would still give pleasure. As another in a well-loved series, it's a welcome restatement of one of childhood's themes in a grand, familiar setting.