The Blue Umbrella by Ruskin Bond | Book Review

The Blue Umbrella by Ruskin Bond Book Review

The Blue Umbrella – a 1980 Indian novella written by our favorite Ruskin Bond, was adapted into a Hindi movie by the same name in 2005. In 2012, this novella was adapted into a comic book by Amar Chitra Katha publications with title The Blue Umbrella – stories by Ruskin Bond.

Inspiration / The Impulse

Happiness is living your childhood… and every time I read this book, it takes me back to my childhood when I lived in Nainital, Uttarakhand. I, along with my friends used to climb on the Pine-clad hills every Sunday. Oh my, what days!

I just love Ruskin Bond because he connects me instantly with the best days of my life as most of his stories are set up on those serene hilly areas, and The Blue Umbrella is one such story. I am sure this beautiful novella will definitely touch a chord not only with the young readers but also with all those adults who still have child inside them.

The Hook

But had she loved the umbrella too much? Had it mattered more to her than people matter?

Summary of The Blue Umbrella

This is the story of a cheerful little girl Binya, who lives with her mother and an elder brother in the hills of Garhwal. One day, she comes across some picnickers in the hills. They had a beautiful Blue Umbrella. Binya fell in love with the umbrella at the first sight. In exchange for her lucky Leopard claw pendant, she acquires that umbrella.

This umbrella brings unbound happiness in Binya’s life, she carries it everywhere with her, and it becomes the talk of the village. Some villagers felt happy for her, but most of them started envying her. One old shopkeeper Ram Bharosa eyed this treasured possession of Binya and decided to own it by any means.

Was Binya able to protect her beautiful blue umbrella from the greedy shopkeeper? Read the story to surprise yourself.

Takeaways

Though the book is primarily called a children’s book, as the story progresses it becomes a mature tale with a deep message.

But an umbrella isn't everything.

The little girl’s kindness and humility melts our heart, and turns a shrewd Ram Bharosa into a friendly and pleasant person. The major takeaway from this story is that – kindness will always make you happier.

What is the moral of the story The Blue Umbrella

Binya, the story’s hero, teaches us the ultimate lessons of humility, kindness, and humanity. The moral of the story can be summed up in one expression by Binya, “But an umbrella isn’t everything”.

When the boy from Rambharosa’s shop steals Binya’s blue umbrella and blames it on him (Rambharosa) after being caught, everybody in the village believes him quickly as they are all well aware of Rambharosa’s obsession with that umbrella. This brought an ill name to him, and the villagers stopped buying from his shop. Seeing the poor shopkeeper’s plight, Binya empathized and decided to gift the umbrella to him. The little girl put his happiness above her own and was ready to part with her most loved possession. In return, Rambharosa also showed kindness by first trying to return the umbrella and then gifting Binya the lucky bear claw pendant, hence proving that kindness will always attract kindness. Rambharosa told everyone that Binya had gifted him this umbrella. Villagers started to buy from his shop again.

Binya’s kindness made her a bigger and happier person, and her sacrifice makes Rambharosa a more pleasant and friendly person. The little girl taught us that true humility means giving joy to others.

What I liked

Everything about this book! I liked the simple yet engaging story. I liked the setting of the story; the lucid writing style of Ruskin Bond; the characterization of Binya; the way the story progresses and portrays various emotions like innocence, love, possessiveness, jealousy, empathy and kindness.

I like Ruskin Bond’s style of giving a message through a simple tale. I liked The Blue Umbrella.

Recommendation - The Blue Umbrella book

5/5

It is a quick and light read – I highly recommend it.

The Blue Umbrella by Ruskin Bond
Genre: Fiction | Children’s Literature
Length: 90 pages

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