20 Ruskin Bond Books for Kids and Teenagers

Ruskin Bond books are a treasure trove that kids and teenagers should dig in to and read. Why ? Because Ruskin Bond books have

  • impeccable language,
  • theme of his stories are interesting,
  • his writing style is witty and imaginative.

Ruskin Bond’s choice of words for his written work is simple and understandable. It’s no surprise that readers can connect with his writings and find a friend in the book. In this article, you will read interesting facts about the famed author Ruskin Bond and a selection of his 20 book titles that kids and teenagers will relish reading.

What does Ruskin Bond Write About?

Ruskin Bond books have characters and setting that is predominantly influenced by his own childhood experiences in the hills of Mussourie. Mountains, nature, simple people, children, animals, plants, railways, ghosts and an uncomplicated laidback life are part of his books. Author Ruskin Bond is a keen observer of human nature, so he writes about characters that are endearing to his readers. Being lonely in childhood, his perceptive wise nature equips Ruskin Bond to understand children’s mind.

Ruskin Bond Writing Style

He does not believe in making his literary work unnecesarily complicated or diificult to read. Books are best when the printed words are understood by the reader, more so when the readers are kids. Only a word or two could be new or difficult on each page, so kids are introduced to new words when they read Ruskin Bond books.

Ruskin Bond mostly writes prose in first person narrative that is conversational. The theme in his stories are relatable to readers. There are moral take-aways from his stories if you analyze and discuss his work in a book club. Ruskin Bond has written stories in adventure, mystery, humour, horror, realistic fiction and memoir genres.

Also read: Nature Stories for Teenagers

What Age Group Can Read Ruskin Bond Books?

Primarily, Ruskin Bond writes for kids above 7 years, teenagers and nature lovers. Yet people of all ages can devour reading his stories. Since his stories are witty and based on themes like friendship, kids enjoy reading Ruskin Bond short stories.

Even then, there are those Ruskin Bond book titles that are read by teenagers and young adults. These titles have somewhat adult narrative.

  • Time Stops at Shamli
  • The Sensualist
  • A Flight of Pigeons
  • Landour Days
  • Lone Fox Dancing
  • Love Among the bookshelves
  • Tales of The Open Roads
  • Death Under The Deodars
  • Little book of Comforts
  • Susanna’s Seven Husbands

Who is Ruskin Bond?

Ruskin Bond is a famous Indian author, having written more than 60 novels, 500 short stories, essays, poems and articles. Ruskin Bond is an Indian by birth and British by descent. He has lived in India for most of his life. His grandfather came to India as a soldier with the British. His father and mother both lived and worked in India. Ruskin Bond was born in Kasauli, 1934, and brought up in India.

So, he has lived in Kasauli, Jamnagar, New Delhi, Dehradun and Mussourie. Ruskin Bond is in his mid-eighties and lives in the misty mountains of Landour, Mussourie with his adopted family.

What Inspires Ruskin Bond to Write Stories?

As a lonely child, Ruskin was very fond of reading which gave solace to his soul. Ruskin Bond read innumerable books from his school library. He lived in a boarding school and so missed his family. His father’s affection and teachings are close to Ruskin’s heart even today. At the suggestion of his father, young Ruskin maintained a daily journal in his school days. In this journal, Ruskin wrote about his school life and his friends, the mischief they were up to, his plans and generally about his regular life. These were the first writings that soon helped him evolve as an author.

His love for the mountains of Mussourie region is legendary. The beauty of the deodar clad mountains, it’s simple hardworking people, children, trains, animals, folklore and his personal experiences inspire Ruskin Bond to write his wonderful stories.

Ruskin Bond Writing Journey

When India became independent, Ruskin went back to England to live with his aunt. Ruskin had earned some money writing for Indian magazines and maintained a journal writing about his life. When Ruskin reached England, he had a longing for the life he had back in the Dehradun “barsati” or the room on the roof. Ruskin converted his writings from those days into a novel and named it “The Room on the Roof”.

This book fetched him an award “John Llewellyn Rhy Memorial Prize” in 1956. Soon he felt ill at ease in England and felt homesick for the hills of Mussourie. He came back to India and worked in New Delhi for a few years before moving back to Mussourie, freelancing as a writer for newspaper and publication houses.

Since then, he has been writing for more than six decades and has created a unique place for himself in the literary space. Leading publishers of India have published his books. A list of Ruskin Bond books include his short stories, poems and novels. The famed author’s stories are part of school textbooks and syllabus too.

Ruskin Bond Awards

Though the author has won many awards, these are some of his prestigious awards.

  • Sahitya Academy Award in 1992
  • Padma Shri in 1999
  • Lifetime Achievement Award by the Delhi Government in 2012
  • Padma Bhushan in 2014

ALSO READ: Guide to study abroad.


Books of Ruskin Bond are evergreen because his writing career began more than six decades ago and so his stories are read by at least two generations of book lovers. Reading Ruskin Bond books is a beautiful experience. Every Bond fan has their own personal favourites from his literary work. His stories are simple, easy to read and will charm you into reading more and more titles from his literary work. This author sure has loyal readers.

This list has 10 memorable Ruskin Bond books for kids, followed by 10 amazing books for teenagers.

1. The Hidden Pool

  • Publication – Penguin Books
  • Year of Publication – 2015
  • Pages – 88
  • Reader age group – 8 years above
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

This is the first novel for children authored by Ruskin Bond. The novel is about three friends from diverse background and their mischievous adventures. The three friends include Laurie an English boy, Anil is the son of the local cloth merchant, and Kamal sells buttons and laces. As they become friends, they get to know each other better as they show each other their different worlds. They discover a secret pool in the mountainside.

They go there and plan their ambitious trek to the Pindari glacier in the higher Himalayas. Nobody from their town has been there before. This book was originally published in 1966 after “Room on the Roof” and has a sequel “Vagrants in the Valley”. “The Hidden Pool” was written for children. During those days, very few children’s books were published in India. If you enjoy reading good stories on children’s friendship, adventure and mischief, then you wouldn’t want to miss reading “The Hidden Pool” by Ruskin Bond.

Ruskin Bond books for teenagers
  • Publication – Penguin Books
  • Year of Publication – 2015
  • Pages – 160
  • Reader age group – 8 years above
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

This is a book of cheerful and inspiring short stories, especially for sports enthusiasts. There are about 8 fun stories on cricket among the 15 delightful sporty reads. Among these is Cricket for the Crocodile, Ranji’s Wonderful Bat, and Uncle Ken at the Wicket. Triumph, friendship, and sporty enthusiasm are the theme of the stories.

Ruskin Bond has written the stories in his distinctive writing style of wit and humour. The young readers will enjoy reading the book from cover to cover. The story Ranji’s Wonderful Bat is also taught in ICSE class 8 textbook. Its an inspiring story of a young boy who is very devoted to playing cricket. How self-confidence and self-belief at a crucial juncture takes Ranji towards success.

3. Kashmiri Storyteller

  • Publication – Puffin
  • Year of Publication – 2011
  • Pages – 112
  • Reader age group – 8 years above
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

It’s an enjoyable collection of Ruskin Bond’s nostalgic memoirs and folk tales. Stories include,

  • A Cold Evening in The Bazaar
  • Javed Khan Warms Up
  • Seven Brides for Seven Princes
  • The Friendship of Hira and Lal
  • In The Land of Peris

These and other enchanting stories are from the cool mountains of Kashmir and Landour. Kamal and his gang of friends collect at Javed Khan’s shop in the evening for friendly banter and some Kashmiri stories. Though the shop is located in the bazaar of Landour, the stories transport them to a magical land of fairies, princes and traders in Kashmir. Ruskin Bond invites kids to sit around the bonfire with these bunch of friends and listen to enchanting tales from Kashmir as they read this book.

4. Great Stories for Children – Ruskin Bond Books

  • Publication – Rupa Publication
  • Year of Publication – 2011
  • Pages – 200
  • Reader age group – 8 years above
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

This book has delightful short stories for children. Readers will find stories about animals, children and ghosts in this book. There’s a monkey named TOTO who fancies an aunty and she is not very comfortable with the monkey’s attention. Among the interesting and funny stories is a story about a ghost.

There is an adventure story of three young children stranded on a haunted hill. It is a great book to read at bedtime or parent/grandparents read-aloud session. As children listen, they visualize the scenes that the author creates with his narrative. Reading short stories serve as fillers in spurts of free time between the daily schedule. Independent readers beginning to read chapter books will enjoy reading this book. 

5. The Great Indian Rope Trick 

  • Publication – Rupa Publications
  • Year of Publication – 2021
  • Pages – 224
  • Reader age group – 8 years above
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

This book has a mix of 29 short stories and memoirs. Some chapters are 3 pages short while some are 30 pages long. The author’s childhood memories of sights, sounds, friendships and unique Indian experiences trickle down into his stories. One such story is of the rope trick by the street artists. Other such mandane and magical enjoyable stories and memoirs are of Dehra, Badrinath, and similar places.

6. Petals on the Ganga

  • Publication – Rupa Publications
  • Year of Publication – 2019
  • Pages – 112
  • Reader age group – 8 years above
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

This collection of stories by Ruskin Bond are based on nature. In his unique style, Ruskin Bond talks about nature as if the natural elements have their personality. Small incidents like birds coming to his cottage make him think of the bird’s journey in the surrounding forest. The mountains, river, trees, animals, forests, winding roads and charming gardens are all in your mind’s eye as you read this book. The scenes unfold in front of your eyes as if you were there.

If you are a mountain person, then this book will give you travel pangs. The river Ganga is integral to the ethos of India and especially the North Eastern mountains of the Himalayan foothills. Families who have been on vacations to these Himalayan mountains will enjoy reading this book aloud in the family room with everyone sitting down to listen and reminisce the trip while enjoying the story.

Nature stories are bound to increase a love for nature and conservation among the readers.

7. Ruskin Bond – Best Selling Children Story Books Collection

  • Publication – Pegasus
  • Year of Publication – 2019
  • Reader age group – 8 years above
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

This is a set of 4 books in a combo. The four books are

  • Tales from Childhood
  • The Blue Umbrella
  • From the Cradle of Nature
  • Stories of Wisdom

Ruskin Bond value-based stories are about nature, friendship, animals and people from the foothills of the Himalayas. The large colourful illustrations are engaging while the author’s narrative will help to develop vocabulary. Reading will help develop creative imagination.

The book shows different plots one by one in an interesting way, which helps kids learn how to tell stories. When reading this interesting book, kids will pick up new words they come across. All of the best-selling books are in this combo book package for kids. The books come in a case that slides open and closes. This saves space and makes it easy to put the books away.

  • Publication – Penguin Books
  • Year of Publication – 2015
  • Pages – 192
  • Reader age group – 9 years above
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

This chapter book has 10 tales of animals and birds. In the stories, you will find a man-eater tiger that creates terror and panic in a Himalayan village. Another story is about an uncommon trust between a leopard and a boy. Monkeys that play mischief with a woman who grows dahlias and a clever crow who thinks humans are stupid.

Then there is the story “The Tiger in the Tunnel” about twelve-year-old boy Tembu, his father Baldeo and the man-eater tiger in the tunnel in dark jungle night. All these stories make the collection fun to read. Animals and humans co-exist despite a clash of interest and in this struggle arise stories that are a delightful read.

9. Thick as Thieves: Tales of Friendship

  • Publication – Penguin Random house
  • Year of Publication – 2017
  • Pages – 208
  • Reader age group – 9 years above
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

Thick as thieves have 25 select short stories on friendship. The author has a great sense of humour and deeply perceptive of his surroundings including the people he befriended in his life. Delightful tales that tell about childhood friendship and pillow fights, best friends and many more stories. Young readers can relate to these stories and treasure their real friends. Some tales are poignant while some are funny. There is also a long poem on friendship “A Song for Lost Friends”.

10. The Cherry Tree

  • Publication – Puffin Books
  • Year of Publication – 2012
  • Pages – 44
  • Reader age group – 8 years above
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

This lovely chapter book is for any reader yet kids above 7 or 8 years can attempt reading it. The illustrations are colourful and the narration is descriptive. The author portrays the emotions of the little boy Rakesh as he plants a cherry seed and watches it blossom into a tree. The relationship between grandfather and Rakesh is beautiful. The story has several takeaways like patience, nurture and resilience. It is a wonderful chapter book for independent readers. Reading this book will definitely give a sense of satisfaction to the reader.


Here are 10 great books of Ruskin Bond that teenagers and adults will enjoy reading.

1. The Essential Collection for Young Readers

  • Publication – Rupa Publication
  • Year of Publication – 2015
  • Pages – 192
  • Reader age group – Teenagers
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

24 essential short stories in this must-read collection has some of the popular stories by the famed author Ruskin Bond. The stories are humorous, witty, engaging and nostalgic. The book includes stories like,

  • Coming Home to Dehra
  • Growing Up with Trees
  • The Tunnel
  • The Blue Umbrella
  • A Case for Inspector Lal

These stories by the author were written in his sixty years of a writing career. Readers forget everything else and travel into the comforting world of Ruskin Bond’s stories. The narrative is flowy and the language is impeccable. Stories include Rusty, grandfather, Bina, leopard,Sura and Sunder singh among other characters. So, there’s humour, nostalgia, and emotions in the stories.

2. The Room on the Roof

  • Publication – Penguin Books
  • Year of Publication – 2014
  • Pages – 208
  • Reader age group – Teenagers
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

This is an award-winning novel written by Ruskin Bond at the young age of seventeen. It is an illustrated must-read classic novel. In this Penguin Publication, Illustrations are by Ahlawat Gunjan. Many young readers, especially middle grades and teenagers have read this book.

This is the first book in the popular and famous Rusty series. The story is about a sixteen-year-old Anglo-Indian orphan boy named Rusty. The teenage boy lives with strict English guardians in Dehradun. He feels stifled and suffocated by the strictness of his guardians. This makes him want to break free.

Rusty has some Indian friends and so he opts to run away to live with them. Fascinated by Indian life, Rusty moves away from the prim and proper English living. In 1951 after completing school, Ruskin was waiting to move to England to his aunt’s house. That’s when he lived in a room on the roof.

3. An Underground Walk

  • Publication – Rupa Piblication
  • Year of Publication – 2019
  • Pages – 208
  • Reader age group – Teenagers
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

This book is about ghosts, creatures and monsters. Unexpected turn of events and bends around the corner bring surprises. It is that kind of book that is not exactly based on the paranormal. Yet it is spooky in everyday kind of things. Hansard is a young forestry student who panics when he finds himself in the clutches of a man-eating tiger. Imagine the desperation and panic of the naval officers when they find themselves trapped in a sinking submarine.

Equally terrorising is the experience of two young children trapped in a cave, several miles under the earth. They have no way of coming out because they just don’t know how to. This book has 12 horror stories which are a compilation of Ruskin Bonds favourite authors in the horror genre. The (thirteenth) last story “Susanna’s Seven Husbands” is been written by Ruskin Bond. The book is suitable for teenagers and young adults.

4. Captain Young’s Ghost: Ghost stories from the Indian Hills

  • Publication – Speaking Tiger Publishing Pvt. Ltd.
  • Year of Publication – 2018
  • Pages – 208
  • Reader age group – Teenagers
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

This book qualifies in the horror section because of its subtle horror elements. The light horror in the short stories will leave you asking for more horror. If you are someone just beginning to read horror then this book is right for you. The twenty stories are poignant and possibly a blur between fiction and memoir.

Bond perceives ghosts as friendly and generous. They are not evil and blood-thirsty. Yet at some places in the stories, you might feel the chill of horror. The places in and around Mussourie feature in the story. The ghosts are of people and soldiers who once lived in this region. Bond believes that people who have lived in these hills never really leave the hills. It’s almost as if Bond were telling you the local gossip of the hills.

  • Publication – Penguin Books
  • Year of Publication – 2016
  • Pages – 248
  • Reader age group – Teenagers
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

There are about thirty stories in the book including the story of The Night Train at Deoli. The stories are witty and about everyday things and happenings which the author perceives with his gentle perspective that makes his stories endearing.

The stories warm your heart with their simplicity and you feel calm to be in this beautiful world. There is a little romance in certain stories like “The women on Platform 8” and “The Eyes Have It” and “The Night Train at Deoli” among others.

6. How To Live Your Life

  • Publication – Harper Collins
  • Year of Publication – 2022
  • Pages – 124
  • Reader age group – Teenagers
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

This latest book is loaded with helpful inspiration for kids and teenagers. Each person reading this book will appreciate and take something away from it. It is based on the beautiful life and times of Ruskin Bond, one of India’s most well-known authors.

This book contains a collection of letters that Ruskin Bond has written. In other words, it’s a letter written by a famous author to his readers in which he offers them instruction, guidance, and life lessons that he’s picked up along the way.

This recent book that Ruskin Bond has written is straightforward, easy to understand, humorous, and reads like a tour through his life. Photos, practical advice, beautiful quotes, motivational phrases, and a passionate letter encouraging individuals to pursue their ambitions are included in this document. You will discover a lot of new inspiration and information on how to live a great life in this book.

7. Set of Three, Ruskin Bond books that Teenagers Will Enjoy Reading

  • Publication – Penguin
  • Year of Publication – 2016 – 17
  • Reader age group – Teenagers
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

This set of three books has the following titles.

  • The Night Train at Deoli
  • Time Stops at Shamli
  • Delhi Is Not Far

8. A Face In The Dark And Other Hauntings

  • Publication – Penguin Random House
  • Year of Publication – 2016
  • Pages – 208
  • Reader age group – Teenagers
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

9. A Flight Of Piegons

  • Publication – Penguin India
  • Year of Publication – 2007
  • Pages – 135
  • Reader age group – Teenagers
  • Stars – 4.5 out of 5

10. Lone Fox Dancing (Ruskin Bond Autobiography)

  • Publisher – Speaking Tiger Publishing Pvt. Ltd.
  • Year of Publication – 2017
  • Pages – 304
  • Readers age group – Teenagers and Adults
  • Stars – 5 out of 5

These are a few more titles that kids and teenagers can read.

  • Getting Granny’s Glasses
  • Grandfather’s Private Zoo
  • Rusty Runs Away
  • The Tree Lover
  • Song of India
  • Ghost Trouble
  • The Room of Many Colours
  • Ranji the Music Maker
  • All-Time Favorites for Children
  • Rusty the Boy from the Hills
  • The Great Train Journey
  • Roads to Mussorie
  • Rusty goes to London
  • Stories of Wisdom
  • Angry River
  • Cricket for Crocodile
  • The Parrot Who Wouldn’t Talk
  • Mr. Oliver’s Diary
  • Dust on the Mountain
  • Escape from Java and Other Tales of Danger
  • Rusty and the Leopard
  • The Thief
  • Crazy Times with Uncle Ken

.. and many more.


Why kids and teenagers must read books by Author Ruskin bond?

Literary work of Ruskin bond is valued by the reading community. Proof of this adulation are the loyal readers and the awards conferred on him by the Indian government. Ruskin Bond’s love for India, it’s landscape and people, is reciprocated by the Indian readers with love and appreciation for his literary contribution.

Keeping this aside, if we assess the value we get by reading the books written by Ruskin Bond then we get the answer to the question. The joy and serenity felt by reading gentle stories of nature, friendship and the themes in Ruskin Bond’s stories can only be experienced by readers.

A side effect of reading his books is reading fluency and a love for the magic of words. It’s his art of observation, acknowledging and recognizing the subtle and finding humour and wonder in the mundane. We don’t need much to be happy and authors like Ruskin bond show us that art.


These are just a few titles from an array of Ruskin Bond books for kids and teenagers. On a busy stressful day, stealing some time to read any of his literary work will transport you to mountains, forests, friends, animals, flora and fauna. You will feel more peace and gratitude for this beautiful world.

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