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Updated: April 23, 2012 16:17 IST

Fantastical adventure

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BURO ANGLA; THE BIG ADVENTURES OF A LITTLE HERO by Abanindranath Tagore, Scholastic Books Rs 165
BURO ANGLA; THE BIG ADVENTURES OF A LITTLE HERO by Abanindranath Tagore, Scholastic Books Rs 165

Ridoy is a bit too mischievous for his own good. But it's his mischief that takes him on a journey that is too good to be true.

Ridoy is a little boy who causes havoc everywhere he goes; he puts bees in cows' ears, kicks the poor little cat, tips over the bucket of fresh milk everyday and is the despair of his parents. So much so that they lock him up when they leave the house! What happens to this proud and cruel boy when he is cursed to be a buro angla, or as big as your thumb? Read this classic story by Abanindranath Tagore to find out.

But to give you a sneak peek into Ridoy's adventures, he decided to go all the way to Manas Sarobar from his little village in the Sunderbans to meet Ganesh and ask him to reverse his curse. How does a little boy travel all the way there? He flies with geese of course!

In fact, his adventures begin when he jumps on to the back of a lame goose who longs to fly with the wild migrating geese all the way to Tibet, and he flies over the countryside having one exciting adventure after another. He meets talking animals, ghosts, kings and other amazing creatures. He finds within himself the courage that he never knew he had, saves a goose from the cunning fox of Chandpur and even fights in a historic battle. But more than courage he discovers the importance of having kindness in your heart and leads the geese to their summer home. The adventures are drawn from Bengali folklore and myths and the storyline is said to be based on Swedish author Selma Lagerlof's The Adventure of Nils.

Buro Angla also tells the story of nature, of the mechanics of how to fly, how to sense the rain approaching, so you are sure to find some fascinating facts weaved into Ridoy's story. Ridoy spends time with the animals and learns about how they live their lives, and about it is to live with them, speaking their language and following their rules.

Abanindranath Tagore was one of the most loved Bengali children's writers, and this tale has created magic for millions of children over the years. For the first time it has been translated into English by Rimi B Chatterjee who has also included some of her illustrations in the book. The author's power of imagination combined with the vivid descriptions of nature and the sense of adventure make it a fascinating read. A remarkable tale of heroism and friendship.

BURO ANGLA; THE BIG ADVENTURES OF A LITTLE HERO by Abanindranath Tagore, Scholastic Books Rs 165

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