Schlein introduces the out-of-the-way okapi via a sort of detective story starring British artist-naturalist-civil servant Harry Johnston, who never did track down a living okapi. But he did get the skin and skull of one, along with a description of the hoofs which established that the mysterious animal, then known only to Congo pygmies, was not a member of the horse family as previously suggested but closely related to the giraffe. It's not an exciting story but it serves to focus interest despite Schlein's digression to review the class mammalia and the particular orders and families considered in establishing the okapi's classification. The last part of the short book describes the solitary ruminants as they live in the rain forest, coming together only to mate. Respectable.