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Book Review: Home by Ruskin Bond

Home is a beautifully written short story by Ruskin Bond about the indispensability of home. The story has been covered in the book Children’s Omnibus, a book full of like such stories. Basically, in this story Ruskin highlights the chemistry that cooks at home between children and their parents. Here, we see Suraj, a thirteen-year-old boy, who loves playing cricket and roaming in the bazaar but he is poor at studies. His father upon seeing his report card scolds him for playing cricket, eating excessive food, and not studying well. On the other hand, Suraj remains silent like an obstinate child. And when his father becomes irritated as he is getting no response, he grunts Suraj to leave the home.

Suraj takes that remark seriously and leaves the home. He has a crisp note of five in his pocket. He otherwise spends money on toys and viands but now as he is out and knows that he will not be going back home, he thinks to spend it judiciously. His main concern is how to get food today or what sort of work to be taken for sustenance. He plans to go to his friend Ranji’s home that may help him finding some work, like selling tea or newspaper. At this thought, Suraj shudders and thinks it’s better to be a customer than working as tea-seller or a newspaper boy.

When he visits Ranji’s home, he finds it locked. He comes back after some time and finds an old gardener who informs that the family has gone to Delhi for a week. When the gardener asks him to go back to his home, Suraj replies that he has run away from his home and it will be insult to go back to home so soon. To this gardener, says that once Ranji comes back he should try running away then. It’s a good idea – Suraj liked it.

Out of five rupees, Suraj buys one yo-yo toy from the bazaar and drinks milk shake for two rupees. By evening he is left with only two rupees, the tension to have food increases. He feels so hungry and at the same time hopes his parents’ are worried for him. Nevertheless, he returns home but there, to his surprise, he finds his parents normal. They weren’t worried for him. He eats food and his father begins playing yo-yo. Seeing the happy state of home, his mother recollects the morning environment of the home. After all, home is home.

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