A capable and inclusive biography of Kipling, but one that is largely external, factual, containing little of the quality of the man or his work, though his more obvious traits are enunciated. Those dramatic early years with their burden of sadness could well have made a more compelling story. (As he has done, indirectly in some of his short stories, -Baa Baa Black Sheep, for instance). India, England, the desolate years with his hated aunt, school years (immortalized in Stalky & Co.) Then back to India and journalism, until forced ""home"" by the heat. A year of travel, London and success. Later years as foremost poet and promulgator of Empire. Competent but uninspired job. With the reading of Kipling questionable with the present generation of young people, one could wish for a more alive biography.