Tuesday, April 17, 2018

The Blue Umbrella by Ruskin Bond

Rating: 4/5
Read on 16th of April,2018

Edition Details:
Format : Paperback
Page Count : 83
Publisher: Rupa
ISBN:9788171673407



First Sentence:
"Neelu, Neelu!" cried Biniya.

Biniya was out in the jungle grazing her cows when she spotted those holiday-makers. They looked like rich people from the plains but what held her attention was the nice blue umbrella that lay beside a woman in the group. Biniya knew she was in love with the umbrella. And then it was hers.

How did she got the umbrella?

Biniya was on cloud nine after getting the umbrella. She became the talk of the village with her fancy possession. Some people admired her and some were envious that out of all the people she had gotten such a fancy article. They tried to dissuade her from using it but they knew their words were falling on deaf ears.

Among these people was one old Ram Bharose. He was the richest man in the village and wanted the umbrella for himself. And he was going to leave no stones unturned for getting his hands over it.

What did Ram Bharose do to get hold of the umbrella? Did he succeed? How did Biniya thwarted his attempts?

Read the novella to find this out.



Major Characters:

Biniyadevi aka Biniya - A ten-eleven year old girl.
Vijay aka Biju - Biniya's older brother
Neelu and Gori - Biniya's cows
Ram bharose - He had a tea stall in Tehri road. He was the richest man in the village
Rajaram - a boy who had come to work for Ram Bharose

The blue umbrella was a fun, sweet read for me. The story keeps you hooked to it. It's supposed to be for children but i think people of all age groups will enjoy it. I definitely did.

I'm from Garhwal too and so i could relate to the life that Biniya was leading. I used to stay in town but my cousins used to live in a near by village and when we used to go to their place we used to take their cows and goats for grazing. It was fun to be in jungle and have adventures of our own. So when i was reading about Biniya taking cows and goats to the jungle i could feel what she was feeling.

When Ruskin Bond writes :

Dark Forest and lonely hilltops held no terrors for her. It was only when she was in the market-town,jostled by the crowds in the bazaar, that she felt rather nervous and lost.

I knew what he meant and it resonated with me. There was time especially during those visits to my aunt's place that i used to feel like this. The story also mentions procupine-quills and we used to get it from my cousins place. They always used to have them in ample amount. This story really took me down the memory lane.

The other characters of the book are equally believable. If you have ever lived in a village or even a small town you'll know. You'll meet people like Ram Bharose, Pujari or school-master's wife there. They are not bad people but sometimes they feel entitled.

I also liked the way the story ends. Often we derive our happiness from things and then we keep consuming. But this kind of happiness is restricted to us only. But If we care for someone, be a little selfless, then also we will be happy and this happiness wouldn't be restricted to us. It would spread to all the people that we'll come in contact with. And i think this later one is the best kind of happiness.

The story also teaches us that every one of us has some good qualities and sometimes when we do good to others selflessly, whether they deserve it or not, then there is a chance that it would make them change their way of thinking. And if that happens then we have made this place somewhat better. And it teaches us that it's never too late to mend our ways. Redemption is possible we just need to try.

The book is also filled with illustrations which made the reading all the more fun.

It's an innocent beautiful short novella that should be read by adults and kids alike. If you have kids then you should read it to them.

If you have read the book then do tell me what did you think of it?

If you haven't read the book and want to read it then you can get it from the following links:
Paperback
Kindle

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