PLOT: 4/5 CHARACTERS: 4.5/5 WRITING: 3.5/5 CLIMAX: 4/5 ENTERTAINMENT: 4/5
Ruskin Bond is one of my favourite authors. There is no denying the beauty and simplicity of his writing. Though his stories are mostly written for children, they captivate readers of all ages. Imagine my absolute delight at having come across a hidden gem of a writer whose book reminded me of Mr. Bond and his timeless tales.
Read on to know about Madhumita Roy’s Bulti’s Adventures in the Dooars, a book written specially for India’s young readers.
Who can read?
The language of the book is simple and as such the book can be picked up by any level of readers including beginners.
Let’s talk about the storyline
Bulti, a ten-year-old adventurous and jovial young girl, is looking forward to a much-awaited family vacation. Ever since her family had fallen out of a good fortune, things have been tough. But despite all odds, they are finally ready to embark upon a new adventure. An adventure that includes Bulti’s parents, younger sister Kulfi, and her aunt Basanti.
But her vacation to the scenic Dooars takes an unexpected turn when she comes across Raisha, a friendly ghost of a young girl who had died twenty-five years ago. Raisha, who still haunts the place of her murder, seeking answers, justice, and revenge for her death.
What does Raisha want from Bulti?
Will Raisha get her justice and revenge?
What will become of Bulti’s vacation in the Dooars?
What is the book all about?
The book is as much about wildlife, about nature, about adventure, as it is about empathy, love, affection, and about familial love. It speaks of a family that is very close-knit. A family in which every person loves each other immensely, a family that would go to any extent to fight for the people who they hold dear.
What about the characters?
Bulti’s character is someone you should definitely be looking forward to. She is a phenomenon in herself. Brave, smart, and intelligent. But more than that, it is her ability to appreciate the right and reject the evil that makes her so special to the reader. In the course of the story, she becomes more than a character. She becomes a kindred spirit, who can differentiate the good from the bad and yet remain naively unaware of the workings of the world.
There are instances where she lies to the teeth. And then there are instances when she knows what she is doing is incorrect. But nevertheless, she weighs her options and decides upon what her heart knows to be right. She is always true to herself and that’s what makes her truly special.
The writing style
From a children’s book point of view, Bulti’s Adventures in the Dooars is absolutely amazing. I haven’t seen such good work from a children’s author in a long time. In author Madhumita Roy’s writing, I sense a Ruskin Bond in the making. The way she writes about a humble, grounded, and idyllic small-town life; the way she writes of nature and childhood adventures – instantly reminds me of my favourite author.
What did I like?
One thing that I loved the most about this book is that it is packed with so much local flavour. There are many references to Bengali culture and cuisine. In that way, the book takes the reader on a mini culinary adventure. There is a lot of ‘flavoursome’ information about the cuisine of Bengal especially North Bengal, Bangladesh, and the Sunderbans area. For book lovers who are also food connoisseurs, this book would turn out to be a delightful read.
Further, the geographical setting of the book i.e. the beautiful region of the Dooars has been described in such vivid and mesmerizing details that it makes the reader brim with wanderlust. The author manages to paint such a striking image of the landscape (and its flora and fauna) that it’s difficult not to fall in love with the place.
Not to mention, such details especially endear the book to a child reader.
Let wanderlust play its magic
Bulti’s Adventures in the Dooars makes you want to pack your bags and travel. I surely want to visit all the amazing places that the book talks about. The beautiful and delicate bridge across the river, the river Murti in all its splendid summer glory, and all the thick verdant forest reserves that are mentioned in the book. The descriptions are so vivid and mesmerizing that it becomes hard to resist those travel bugs.
Who would I recommend the book to?
The book would make a great read for a city dweller, especially people who aren’t as connected with nature, for they would enjoy reading about life in small jungle towns.
It all comes down to entertainment value
When it comes to entertainment, it is served in generous doses.
In the end
In Bulti’s Adventures in the Dooars, you see many things combined in a single package. There is a story of hope, a story of familial love, a story of travel and adventure. And then it also has elements of amateur detective fiction, murder mystery, and also a paranormal mystery, all of it combined with the love for nature. And there you have it – a total entertainer.
The final verdict
Go for it!
Pick the book if
- If you are looking for good Indian fiction for children aged 8 to 12 years.
- You love exploring new authors and new books.
- You enjoy books by Ruskin Bond.
- You are looking for books that combine the love for adventure, mystery, travel, and nature.
Skip the book if
- You are not looking for children’s fiction.
Can’t wait to read it? Buy Bulti’s Adventures in the Dooars using the link below.