The Wind in the Willows | Sunday Observer

The Wind in the Willows

The Wind in the Willows, a book written by Kenneth Grahame, was published in 1908. The novel is slow moving and fast paced: it is about four anthropomorphised animal characters namely Badger, Rat, Mole, and Toad within a pastoral edition of England. The book is notable for its mixture of adventure, mysticism, morality, and friendship.

The Wind in the Willows portrays the adventures of a set of four animal friends that display human behaviour: Badger, Rat, Mole, and Toad. The Wind in the Willows consists of three narratives put together: the tale of the companionship of Rat and Mole, the adventures of Toad, and the two emotional chapters on nature called Wayfarers All and The Piper at the Gates of Dawn (Grahame 2). The narrative begins when Mole deserts the spring cleaning of his underground house to take a walk down the riverbank. Mole meets Rat, and the two turned out to be friends. Mole as well becomes pals with Toad, the rich proprietor of Toad Hall.

Toad persuades Rat and Mole to take a journey on his gypsy caravan. However, during the trip they are forced off the way by a speeding vehicle. After deep thinking, Toad deserts the caravan to chase the car. Rat and Mole go back home.

One of the major themes of The Wind of Willows is the journey; in the narrative, different characters feel the desire to travel and the need to survey space outside their home area. Yet most of these trips result in homesickness and danger. Rat takes Mole out for a ride in his rowing ship. The two friends get along well. The two of them use more of their time on the river, with Rat training Mole the ways of the river. Among the odyssey of Rat and Mole on one summer day, they paid a visit to Toad.

Toad is friendly, jovial and rich but conceited, and so obsessed about things and dismisses them later.

Toad’s present craze is his horse-drawn convoy. Mole wants to meet Badger, who lives in the Wild Wood. However, Rat knows that Badger does not welcome visits, and so declines to take him, saying that if Mole is patient, Badger himself will pay a visit. However, on a winter’s day, Mole visits the Wild Wood to walk around, hoping to meet Badger.

Lost in the woods, he succumbs to panic and fright and hides in the midst of the roots of a sheltering tree.