“Coming Round the Mountain: In the Year of Independence” is targeted at young children and pre-teens, but having devoured it in a single sitting myself, I feel that people of all ages will thoroughly enjoy it. In fact, I’m rushing to share it with my father and father-in-law, both of whom studied in boarding schools, as I know they will love it too.
The book made me smile, cry and feel thoroughly nostalgic, and I’m sure it will appeal to you and your children too. Please pick this gem of a book up at the earliest- you will not regret it!
Though I never went to a boarding school yet this book takes me back to my schooldayss of getting whacked by the cane, the strict P.T master, getting late to school, getting detention and the food in the canteen.
I still remember precisely, I used to gulp down my lunch in ten mins and rush to the library to spend rest of the lunchtime reading books. While the other kids played, Ruskin Bond's books took me closer to my love for reading.
And with this new book of his, Coming Round the Mountain, an autobiographical memoir, I am taken back to his life at School through the Partition of 1947.
The 13 year old Bond loves reading, plays football and hockey, loves eating jalebis abd spending time with friends.
This book takes you to the age where friendship matters more than religion and politics.
"Do wars solve anything, or do they just lead to more wars?"
Reminds us that our freedom lead us to our war against our own people.
This book brought back memories from my school days and summer holidays. I’m not too proud of the fact but ‘Coming Round the Mountain’ is the second book Ruskin Bond I’ve read. The first one, ‘The Ruskin Bond Children’s Omnibus’, I read way back in 2001 (if my memory serves me right) in my summer holidays after tenth standard exams.
‘Coming Round the Mountain’ made me feel like that little girl again. I felt like I’d gone back in time, and not just through the story, which is set in the year of India’s Independence. Written in first person the book is a chapter from Bond’s own life going back to his school days. The story is packed with interesting characters, school sporting events, and adventures involving underground tunnels. In a film-y twist, we also see a girl somehow making it to an all boys’ school and the boys’ reaction to it. The part that got me nostalgic was where the boys would be required to go to the school library and get books to read. We too, had a dedicated “Library period” once a week. I used to love browsing through the books and finally selecting one to read the rest of the week. It’s probably where my love for reading and books grew stronger.
The book is meant for ages 9 and up, but at 32, I had a jolly good time reading the story. I perhaps enjoyed it more because stories about adventures and about kids living in hostels were my favourite when I was a child and this book had both. At a little over a 100 pages, it was a quick read and the pencil illustrations made the story more interesting. I read 20 odd pages every day over 4-5 days along with my evening coffee and throughout that week, that second cup of coffee had come to be something I was looking forward to, and not just for the coffee.
The prose was capturing, the story moved at a wonderful pace, and at the end of it, I wished there was a little more for me to read. I realised after I started reading this book that it is the third book in a series, and I can’t wait to read the other two as well.
No one needs to tell you how deeply Ruskin Bond's books impact you. They leave you with fulfilled with uncanny emotions. Coming around the mountain - In the years of Independence by Ruskin Bond is one such book. Published by Puffin books, it is short memoir. Ruskin Bond books cannot be reviewed, in my opinion. They are to be felt from the depths of your soul.
Ruskin Bond is a 13-year old boy in a boarding school who loves reading, playing football and hockey, exploring secret tunnels with his friends and eating hot jalebis. The book talks about Bond’s friends, the football matches with rival schools, the strict PT teacher and caning from the headmaster, the lone girl in the all-boys’ school, the Independence of India and the partition of the country and the aftermath.Review: Coming Round the MountainThough I never went to a boarding school, I enjoyed the slice of life of a boarding school. The beauty of the book is in its simple storytelling, which is a Bond trademark. The book has lovely illustrations from Mihir Joglekar.The book: Coming Round the Mountain is targeted towards young children and pre-teens. My 7-year old daughter absolutely loved reading the book. Let alone her, I enjoyed the story as much as my daughter. I liked the fact that Bond has dealt with the difficult subjects of India’s partition and death sensitively, keeping in mind his young and impressionable audience. This book gave me a good opportunity to talk about the Indian Independence with my daughter. I would recommend everyone to pick up this book - Coming Round the Mountain for not only your child, but also for yourself and other adults in the family.