Rusty Runs Away – A nostalgic novella by Ruskin Bond

Nestled in the vicinity of Dehra’s snow mountains is the residence of Rusty, a melancholic dreamer who aspires to live life on his own terms. Through Rusty, Author Ruskin Bond has recounted his own boyhood days in Dehra, Shimla and Mussoorie. ‘Rusty Runs away’ is story of every kid who is deprived of parental love and craves for a heartfelt tenderness. The incidents happening in the memoir – Rusty Runs Away will tug your heart and compel to go back to your boyhood days. Have you every bunked school to visit the cities, relish on street side food and watch cinema? This is one childhood fantasy every kid has craved to and fulfilled by playing rookie. I have done it countless times and got a good thrashing from my parents.

There is a ‘Rusty’ hidden in every person who wants to break free from his daily chores and hectic responsibilities. Today we are so entrapped in web of fake desires, expectations that we have stopped living the real life we aspired for. We are no less than a money earning robot. The nostalgic episodes in this book will encourage you to pursue your dreams even in the toughest times. The most interesting episode in the novel is the escape of Rusty and his friend Daljit from their boarding school – Arundel. This escape adventure takes them on interesting locations till they finally reach the sea port only to face delay. Read this to personally experience the journey that is a roller coaster ride of happiness, joy, exploration and imagination.

The other story in this memoir is the friendship between Rusty and Omar which blossoms in Shimla. Set during the backdrop of pre-independence Rusty and Omar strike a bond and enjoy the best moments of friendship – playing hockey, discovering tunnels and sharing their emotions. Like Rusty, even Omar is an orphan. The heart breaking partition tears apart their partnership and Omar has to leave India. After 18 years, Rusty receives the news that Omar has died in air crash during the Indo-Pak War of 1972. This is one of my favorite chapters in this novel. If you have disconnected from your long lost colleague then you will definitely relate to this story of Rusty and Omar.

The most nostalgic episode in this novel is the friendship of Rusty with Somi, Ranbir and Suri who help him to break free from the cage of melancholia and enjoy the life to the fullest. Rusty not only enjoys food on road side stalls, but also discovers the color of happiness by celebrating Holi with his friends. This friendship gives Rusty the courage to rebel against his tyrant guardian. Rusty not only rebels, but also thrashes his guardian black and blue, putting an end to the strict tyranny imposed on him.

‘Rusty Runs Away’ is celebration of friendship, togetherness, love, freedom and nostalgia. This memoir is one of the best works of Ruskin Bond which will touch your heart’s string. The scenic descriptions, travelogues will inspire you to take a trip to your favorite destination. As a social human being, we are so concerned about people that we suppress the ‘real person’ in us. We care about other’s opinions but never heed to the inner voice of our conscious. I hope that after reading this book – Rusty Runs Away, you will definitely look out for your inner self.


4 Comments Add yours

  1. Zoeb says:

    As always with your posts, this beautiful and lilting review of Ruskin Bond’s timeless tales of Rusty is just what this author deserves in the form of praise. ‘Rusty Runs Away’ is a smooth and seamless compilation of the lesser known Rusty stories and adventures, such as the ones involving him and school friend Daljit, along with the unanimously acclaimed novella ‘The Room On The Roof’ which is here condensed along with a new first-person perspective.

    This is a refreshing change and even as people like me who have already read that amazing novel will enjoy it because the story is essentially timeless. It is full of poignancy, romance, humour and friendship. It is the tale of a boy’s coming of age as he learns how to break the boundaries of class and society and experience new discoveries. It is also tragic towards the end but it also sees Rusty now as a grown-up man, finally realising that life is not really a bed of roses.

    As always, your blend of potent, wonderful descriptions of the book itself and your own personal experiences and feelings is really winsome and appealing. Well done again, Prashant.

  2. Thanks for your encouraging words Zoeb. It is always a treat reading Ruskin Bond books. There is a Rusty hidden in everyone but unfortunately people suppress it. I thoroughly enjoyed Rusty Runs Away. Hoping to read Room on the roof by ruskin bond soon

  3. Daksh says:

    Nicely written…..would like to read this one as I have missed this one. And defiantly read room on the roof. That was my first book and started loving his writing since then.

    1. Thanks for your encouraging comments Daksh and happy to know that you love reading Ruskin Bond books too !!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s