If , Victor Dragunsky and Kanchil

My Baba gave me this book when I was a kid. He bought the book from the roadside shop in Nagpur. That particular shop used to sell books by Russian authors published by Mir Publications and the prices were damn cheap.

I remember my Aai , my kid sister and I reading books about Maths and Physics by Perelman. Pushkin’s poetry and the books on astronomy and more.

The previous post titled ‘If’ struck a chord in my mind. I had read something with the same title before. On racking my brain I remembered that the story titled ‘If’ was in the book called ‘The Adventures of Dennis’ by Victor Dragunsky. This book had been my childhood friend. I even read it when I was in college. I would compare his writing skills to those of Ruskin Bond. The Adventures of Dennis, The Road to the Bazaar, The Room on the Roof are my favorite children books of all times.Books such as these are evergreen. Even if you are an adult you will appreciate the simplicity and the timelessness of these books.

This is the link to If by Victor Dragunsky.

The entire collection can be found at

For those who remember : Things I like and Things I don’t, here are a few tidbits I like:

I like to breathe into Mommy’s ear. But most of all I like to sing, and I always sing very loudly.

I like to listen to a beetle scratching inside a box. And on Sundays I like to crawl into bed beside Daddy so we can talk about our dog. As soon as we move to a bigger apartment we’re going to buy a dog and train it, and feed it, and it’ll be a very intelligent and bouncy dog, and it’ll steal lump sugar, and I’ll wipe up all its puddles, and it’ll follow me around like a devoted dog.

I like to read stories about Kanchil. Kanchil is a small, smart, naughty gazelle with quick eyes and tiny horns, and shiny pink hooves. When we move to a bigger apartment we’ll buy a gazelle, and it’ll live in the bathroom.

I like to chew on something when I read.

If there’s anything I hate it’s going to the dentist. As soon as I see the dentist’s chair I feel like zooming off to the other end of the world. I also hate having to stand up on a chair and recite when we have company.

I don’t like to lose.I don’t like to play ring-around-a-rosie at birthday parties, because I’m not a baby.I don’t like stuck-up people.I hate to have iodine put on my finger on top of having cut it in the first place.I don’t like to hear loud noises when I’m trying to sleep.I hate boys and girls who speak in grown-up voices over the radio.


5 thoughts on “If , Victor Dragunsky and Kanchil

  1. aniket

    You know what,I’m just mad about those stories.Even now.
    I grew up reading “Dennischya Goshti” and “Don bhau” and I love those russian books.
    If anyone knows where can I get those books translated in marathi,I’ll be obliged to him\her.
    The translations into marathi were mindblowing..just superb.

    Please let me know the bookshops which still sell russian books.
    If someone wants to get in touch,reach me at :


    thanks in advance.


  2. Ninad

    Hello! The Adventures of Dennis was my favourite book while growing up and still remains one of the best books I have read….no words would be enough to thank Victor Dragunsky for the joy that he brought to millions of kids around the world through his book! Sadly I cannot place my copy of the book either – apparently my folks gave it to another kid some years back and it has been untraceable since then. It is too bad that the book has been out of print for years now. I bought the book in an exhibition of Russian books that used to be an annual feature in Pune – and I do remember that there were Marathi and Hindi translations of these too! Does anyone remember the publisher? Maybe Dennis-lovers can coax them into publishing the book again? 🙂

  3. Prashant

    hey..i also read this book when i was kid…i loved it..and still love it, i read it in marathi.

    ..and guess what i also met a russian girl who had read this book when she was a kid ..my girl on a ball 😉

  4. Rashmi

    Hey! this is a surprise!! I had a copy of ‘Adventures of Dennis’ when i was little… I simply loved it… I wonder where that book is now!


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