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‘Bond’ with Nature: All-Time Favourite Nature Stories

Dive into the enchanting world of Ruskin Bond, one of India’s most beloved authors, as he takes us on a literary journey through his latest book, All-Time Favourite Nature Stories. With tales that touch the heart and soul, Bond reminds us of the importance of connecting with nature and finding comfort in its earthy embrace. Whether you are a long-time admirer of Bond’s work or have just been introduced to his artistry, let these stories whisk you away into the nostalgia and timeless beauty that surrounds us all.

Read this excerpt from the All-Time Favourite Nature Stories to catch a glimpse.

All-Time Favourite Nature Stories
All-Time Favourite Nature Stories || Ruskin Bond


The Window

I came in the spring and took the room on the roof. It was a long, low building which housed several families; the roof was flat, except for my room and a chimney. I don’t know whose room owned the chimney, but my room owned the roof. And from the window of my room, I owned the world.

But only from the window.

The Window

The banyan tree, just opposite, was mine, and its inhabitants were my subjects. They were two squirrels, a few mynah, a crow and at night, a pair of flying foxes. The squirrels were busy in the afternoons, the birds in the mornings and evenings, and the foxes at night. I wasn’t very busy that year—not as busy as the inhabitants of the banyan tree.


There was also a mango tree, but that came later, in the summer, when I met Koki and the mangoes were ripe.


At first, I was lonely in my room. But then I discovered the power of my window. I looked out on the banyan tree, on the garden, on the broad path that ran beside the building, and out over the roofs of other houses, over roads and fields, as far as the horizon. The path was not particularly busy, but it was full of variety—an ayah pushing a baby in a pram; the postman, an event in himself; the fruit and toy sellers, calling their wares in high-pitched familiar cries; the rent collector; a posse of cyclists; a long chain of schoolgirls; a lame beggar . . . all passed my way, the way of my window.


In the early summer, a tonga came rattling and jingling down the path and stopped in front of the house. A girl and an elderly lady climbed down, and a servant unloaded their baggage. They went into the house and the tonga moved off, the horse snorting a little.


The next morning, the girl looked up from the garden and saw me at my window.


She had long, black hair that fell to her waist, tied with a single red ribbon. Her eyes were black like her hair and just as shiny. She must have been about ten or eleven years old.


‘Hello,’ I said with a friendly smile.


She looked suspiciously at me. ‘Who are you?’ she said.


‘I’m a ghost.’


She laughed, and her laugh had a gay, mocking quality. ‘You look like one!’


I didn’t think her remark was particularly flattering, but I had asked for it. I stopped smiling anyway. Most children don’t like adults smiling at them all the time.


‘What have you got up there?’ she asked. ‘Magic,’ I said.


She laughed again, but this time without mockery.


‘I don’t believe you,’ she said.


‘Why don’t you come up and see for yourself?’ She hesitated a little but came around to the steps and began climbing them, slowly and cautiously. And when she entered the room, she brought a magic of her own.


‘Where’s your magic?’ she asked, looking me in the eye.


‘Come here,’ I said, and I took her to the window and showed her the world.


She said nothing but stared out of the window, first uncomprehendingly and then with increasing interest. And after some time, she turned around and smiled at me, and we became friends.


I only knew her name was Koki and that she had come to the hills with her aunt for the summer; I didn’t need to know anything else about her, and she didn’t need to know anything about me except that I wasn’t really a ghost—at least not the frightening kind. She came up my steps nearly every day and joined me at the window. There was a lot of excitement to be had in our world, especially when the rains broke.


At the first rumblings, women would rush outside to retrieve the washing from the clothes line and if there was a breeze, to chase a few garments across the compound. When the rains came, they came with a vengeance, making a bog of the garden and a river of the path. A cyclist would come riding furiously down the path, an elderly gentleman would be having difficulty with an umbrella and naked children would be frisking about in the rain. Sometimes Koki would run out to the roof and shout and dance in the rain.


And the rain would come through the open door and window of the room, flooding the floor and making an island of the bed.


But the window was more fun than anything else. It gave us the power of detachment: we were deeply interested in the life around us, but not involved in it.


‘It is like a cinema,’ said Koki. ‘The window is the screen and the world is the picture.’


Get your copy of Ruskin Bond’s All-Time Favourite Nature Stories from Amazon now.

June Reads: Recommended Books for Children

Get ready for a magical journey into the world of children’s literature with our selection of June releases! From delightful picture books that bring stories to life, to captivating chapter books and sparkling illustrations, these tales will take kids and parents alike on literary escapades. Join us as we unveil stories that will inspire laughter, spark curiosity and create cherished memories.

My First Sudha Murthy Collection: A Set of Four Chapter Books
My First Sudha Murthy Collection: A Set of Four Chapter Books || Sudha Murthy

From India’s favourite writer comes a curated collection of 4 heartwarming stories packaged as charming chapter books. Each book offers a splendid introduction to Sudha Murty’s world through captivating illustrations, endearing characters and deliciously written tales in her unique style.

Magical, beautiful and full of wonder this boxset is a perfect gift for beginners.


Bipathu and Very Big Dream
Bipathu and Very Big Dream || Anita Nair

When school reopens in the village of Kaikurussi after the pandemic lockdown, nine-year-old Bipathu makes new friends-Madama, a blind lady who has moved to the village, Maash, a neighbour, Rahul, a boy who loves football as much as she does, and Duggu, a rescued puppy. When Madama gifts Bipathu’s brother Saad, a special needs child, a pair of braces, Bipathu starts believing in the power of the universe. So, when Suleiman, the class bully, roughs up Rahul to prevent him from training for the football match selections, Bipathu looks to the universe for help.

The Girl Who Loved To Run: P.T. Usha
The Girl Who Loved To Run: P.T. Usha || Lavanya Karthik


Quick as a bird, fast as a train-there she goes! This is the story of P.T. Usha, before she became a legend in Indian sports.


The Paper Plane Flew
The Paper Plane Flew || Bharti Singh

One afternoon, Mithi and her father make a paper aeroplane and send it into the sky. How far it will travel?


Simi Stands Tall
Simi Stands Tall || Arti Sonthalia


Simi has to join a new school in a new city. But the three-time academic award winner of Bhaarti Bhavan is suddenly a nobody at Newton International School. She discovers that a boy named Parth, who dresses in shabby clothes and torn shoes, is much smarter than her. The popular girl, Alisa, has a mean streak. Simi’s only confidant is her pet goldfish, Goldie, as she navigates annoying older siblings and her mother’s chemotherapy.
With so many changes in her life, will Simi learn to choose her human friends wisely, stand up tall for herself and defend her real friends?

Don’t miss out on the joy and wonder that await in our June collection!

Reflections of loss and grief

Pinky is a recluse who rarely leaves the suburbs. When her husband, Pasha, goes missing and everyone assumes the worst, she sets off to find him. In her search, she encounters a dream-like landscape: the ancient interior of the city she was born in, the bright farms and fields of Pasha’s childhood and the dark wilderness of the mountains, where she must finally confront her fears.

Here we highlight 7 quotes from the book where she experiences emotions such as loss and grief.


‘I told him you had disappeared soon after he last saw you. He said, ‘I’m sorry for you,’ and looked sadder still. I said I was searching for you because everyone else except your mother thought you were dead.’

‘Alone again in the car I saw a vision of you with the blood pouring out, black as oil, I could see the stars in it. Your body sinking into the blacksand but for a finger or knee or shoulder. The blood was then blue then purple then red as the sun went up.’

‘When I opened my eyes the stars were gone.

Front cover of Still Life
Still Life || Anoushka Khan

We were no longer ghosts under an ancient sky but humans with a beginning and an end, clothed in our machine-spun fabrics and so pale in the white light from the city below.’

‘There is dignity in death’, my father said. ‘Even decay is beautiful.’

‘You weren’t sitting there smiling and smoking. There was no one inside.’

‘I stopped in the middle of the bridge and looked carefully at the sharp rocks far down, hoping not to see you but wanting not to miss you.’

‘Then I sucked my breath in and ran screaming into the shadowy thing and it exploded around us. Inside it were pieces of light and dark that flew out, so many of them that they were all I could see.’


Still Life is an experiment with visual storytelling, using pictures and words to create a world that is both unsettling and extraordinary.

Inspiration for your next Illustrative and Writing Project

Still Life, by Anoushka Khan is an experiment with visual storytelling, using pictures and words to create a world that is both unsettling and extraordinary. Part road trip, part existential thriller ,it seeks new ways to look at love, isolation, memory and loss, asking what connects us to each other and to the natural world, and how we are governed by impulse we barely understand.

Today we have a chat with the Anoushka to understand how she worked on this masterpiece, and her inputs!

Front Cover Still Life
Still Life || Anoushka Khan

When did the idea for this book first come to you?

I was doing the washing up a few years ago and I suddenly thought, I’ll do a novel with paintings! I’d seen that paintings with words scrawled on had the power to move me, as did children’s picture books, and I wanted to recreate that simplicity and intensity.

What is your writer-(and illustrative) routine? 

I’m lucky enough to have a home office; I shut the door, look at the artwork I’ve already made as a run-up, and then dive in. I only really get snatched hours here and there.

Was there a different element or zone you had to bring yourself to whenever you’d get down to work on this book?

The only way I can work is with my headphones on playing music—it shines a mental spotlight on the work and makes everything else disappear. I feel like music made this book, it’s far and away the biggest influence on my work.

What was the most challenging, and was the most rewarding experience of this project?

The most challenging aspect was probably my relative ineptitude with technology; I don’t know how many hours I spent trying to figure out how to lasso images in Photoshop or compress PDFs or whatnot. The most rewarding? A couple of people I know nearly cried when they read the book. I was so happy that it made a mark.  

What is one thing you would, and one thing you wouldn’t recommend to anyone wanting to work on a book?

Enjoy getting lost in the process, rather than looking to the horizon. Try not to compare your work to others.

How difficult was it to illustrate such dark and complex emotions?

It’s really useful to be able to deploy words as well as images to convey mood or tone, and in some ways you can use one to balance out the other. And you can make it cinematic: focus on the character’s feet or a bowl of fruit while a particularly disturbing train of thought or difficult conversation is taking place. There is a darkness that permeates the book, but it’s from melancholy and mystery rather than bleakness—I think that would be much more difficult to sustain.


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