Parenting is a blissful responsibility. When raising your kid(s), you get a chance to live your childhood again. While you enjoy seeing kid(s) making little progress and even be proud of him/her/them, you also feel the need to implant the values, morals, ethics and wisdom you get through the years.
There is no better way to convey a message than through an interesting story. There is a technical word call “edutainment” for that (EDUcation + enterTAINMENT).
That’s why “kids literature” is a genre on its own. Very few authors explore this genre, especially in Indian languages. That’s one of the reasons we are always curious to find a book in this genre that is worth reading and sharing our views for.
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|Book Title||:||ईलू : चलनेवाली चिड़िया
|Author||:||Kamal Upadhyay (कमल उपाध्याय)|
|Publisher||:||Self Published (Dec 2020)|
|# of Pages||:||1073 KB; 43|
|# of Chapters||:||–|
Recently, we got a chance to read ईलू : चलनेवाली चिड़िया (ILU: The Walking Sparrow) by Kamal Upadhyay. It is a prequel to his earlier book “ILU”. Here are quick links to our book review for the same and an author interview with Kamal in the same context.
- Ilu – A Hindi Short EBook By Kamal Upadhyay | Review
- A Candid Interview With Kamal Upadhyay | Author Of ILU
Let us take a look at the cover page of this book.
As you can see, it is a well-illustrated cover page with the right choice of colors. You can see a sparrow holding the trophy she won (yes, she is the protagonist of the story : Ilu). The stone she stands on shows that she won the competition. In the background, you see a natural landscape full of greenery. And yes, the famous helicopter of Marlo also makes an appearance here.
I like the cover page. Not only the kids, but adults will also be attracted to it. And, more importantly, it remains faithful to the story as well.
Let us take a bird’s eye view of the story.
Ilu (ईलू) is a very young sparrow. She lives with her father Chino (चीनो), who loves her more than anything in the world. Tinu (टीनू), her mother is missing since a while now.
Chino has two missions on hand. Raising his daughter Ilu properly and search for the truth about missing of Tinu.
Ilu is still growing up and for her own safety Chino strictly prevents her from attempting to fly. In fact, he has stopped flying in front of her. He gets his cheat-flying sessions when Ilu is at her school.
We find all kind of characters around us, so does Ilu. While she has a best friend at school and some good teachers, there is a wealthy spoilt-brat also, who loves to show-off.
One day, after dropping Ilu to school Chino went for his routine. Eventually, he got into a trouble. Unknown to this development, Ilu waited for her father at the school-door, who instructed her not to leave as he is going to pick her up. At last, when it started getting dark, she gathers the courage and started walking towards her home.
Will she be able to reach her home alone? Or will she also be caught into trickey situations? If something happens to her, who will help her? The jungle is not a safe place in night as owls, foxes and other shady characters lurk during those times. What about the competition? Well, all these questions are better get answered by reading this short EBook.
Views And Reviews:
This book perfectly falls in the “edutainment” arena. Through the fictional world of birds and animals, the author has created a small replica of the society. The behavior of them will remind you of that of humans.
The author is good at exploring emotions and you can see that the author has shared some of his (or say each father’s) emotions quite well. Same we can say for all relations, be it father-daughter relation or friendship, everything is explored pretty effectively.
Here is a conversation from the book for example:
ईलू अपने बिस्तर से उठी, चीनो की तरफ देखा और अपने पंखों को फैलते हुए कहा – पापा, मैं आपसे बहुत प्यार करती हूँ|
“मैं भी आपसे बहुत प्यार करता हूँ बिटिया लेकिन इसका मतलब यह तो नहीं की मैं आपको स्कूल जाने के लिए सुबह ना उठाऊं! …”
This will remind you of the conversation we found in almost every home where school going kids live. It is an emotional conflict between parenting and love. While you love your kids, you have to guide them to do the right things. These lines indicate the best way to convert the conflict into a conversation full of reality and emotions.
Like in his other work, Kamal comes with some linguistically beautiful lines in this book as well. For example:
घर में एक तरफ मोमबत्ती जल रही थी| अँधेरा इतना था कि मोमबत्ती का गुमान सूरज से कम नहीं था |
By the way, those who know Kamal, know that he is good at satire. He has reactivated his passion recently and started sharing some of his satire articles. And, you will find some such interesting lines in this book as well. For example:
“अरे मनुष्य इस तरफ आते रहते है, किसी मनुष्य से छीन लिया होगा |”
“सही कहा, मनुष्य ना हुआ मतदाता हो गया हर कोई डराने चला आता है |”
Also a similar conversation that we hear in our society, found a place in this book.
“बस हो गया, उड़ने के लिए तैयार है लेकिन चीनी माल कि तरह, चल गया तो चाँद तक नहीं तो शाम तक कि गैरन्टी भी नहीं है| “
And, the author spreads a very important message, that is even more relevant when 14-January is approaching. This is an indirect yet efficient way to teach the children to take care of other species and implanting the roots of the theory of co-existance.
हे भगवान्, इन मनुष्यों को सतबुद्धि दे| अपने आनंद के लिए पतंग उड़ाते है और उसका धागा हम पक्षियों की गर्दन काटने के लिए छोड़ जातें हैं|
Here are some of the fantastic lines from the book exploring emotions, sarcasm, surrounding, and events.
“उड़ने तो तब आएगा ना पिन्नी, जब मेरा पापा मुझे उड़ने देंगे|”
“वाह बिटिया, आजकल स्पेडर मैन का अलावा पढ़ाई में भी ध्यान दे रही हो | बहुत खूब | ”
ईलू लगभग – लगभग अपने घर की तरफ पहुँच चुकी थी कि तभी उसे उल्लू कि आवाज उसे सुनाई दी|
उसका सक अब यकीन में बदल गया कि उल्लू उसे चकमा देकर उसकी बस्ती तक पहुंचना चाहता है |
Of course, as you can notice there are some words/phrases that require better attention.
This is a comparatively bigger story than the first installment of Ilu, especially in terms of incidents. Also, the author has infused a “mystery” element on which he may plan a next book in the series.
While you will find it interesting to read about Marlo and his helicopters; the “owl” sequence will give you an idea about their “way of living”. It will be easy for kids to grasp it.
This book has many characters and the author has given them the exposure they require. It is not an easy task to maintain this balance, but, in this book, it seems to be done naturally. When visiting the journey of ईलू, चीनो, कपिलो, मार्लो, टीनू, पिन्नी, किट्टो, मिस पिकाको, सीपो, and others, you will feel exploring the journey of human beings. They are very convincing and so do the incidents in the book. The day-to-day struggle, the joys of small achievements, worry for the loved ones, feeling low and high emotionally, all the feelings we experience in routine and elaborated through these fictional characters.
The book, without preaching, conveys the message: “conquering odds with the determination is the way to live”. And, according to me, this is the biggest takeaway from the book.
Based on the readers’ mindset to compare the number of pages against the price, it may be considered costly by some of them.
I found it a very interesting read. It is like a PanchTantra story set up in modern times.
Around 7.5 out of 10.
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