"High in the mountainous rainforests of Burma and India grow some of the world's last stands of mature, wild teak. For more than a thousand years people here have worked with elephants to log these otherwise impassable forests and move people and goods under cover of the forest canopy. Shell explains that the relationship between elephant and rider is an intimate one that lasts for many decades. When an elephant is young, he or she is paired with a rider, a mahout. The two might work together their entire lives. The result is a new perspective on animal intelligence, and an unexpected relationship between evolution in the natural world and political struggles in the human one." -- adapted from jacket.