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Written by Richa Jha and illustrated by Ruchi Shah

Edited by Archana Atri

Layout and design by Shakil Khan

ISBN: 9788194102915

Rs 499 | 32 pp. Hardcover

28.5 cm x 16.5 cm | 300gm

Release Date: September 25, 2023

Best for ages 7 years +


Additional information

Weight 300 g
Dimensions 165 × 285 mm


AKELA Back Cover

About the book:

Akela Lekhan Coot, the looney lonesome writer, longs for some quiet. He is convinced that the din in the lane he lives in is fettering his imagination. So he breaks away from the incessant cacophony that surrounds him. Will the silence and the solitude bring to him the ideas and words that elude him?

Will Akela Lekhan Coot’s story find its soul?

With Ruchi Shah’s incredibly detailed, immersive and striking artwork and Richa Jha’s lyrical prose with its moments of subtle humour, lightness of touch and quiet contemplation, Akela invites readers to reflect on the limitations of their self-constructed ivory towers. And it explores the idea of whether art can be created in isolation or whether it needs community life to birth it.

For, we make people. And people make us.


The various themes and sub-themes that the title touches upon:

Isolation, escapism, community-living, creative-blocks, creative-enablers, self-discovery, transcendence.


About the Creators:

Richa Jha is a children’s author and the founder of Pickle Yolk Books, an independent children’s publishing house which was nominated for the prestigious Bologna Prize for Children’s Publisher of the Year 2022 in Europe, and has been a three-time finalist as the Best Publisher at the Publishing Next Industry Awards, India.

Books written and published by her, all of which delve into the internal world of children and adults, have won national and international recognition across platforms like the South Asia Book Award, USA, the White Raven, Germany, the BRAW Amazing Bookshelf, Italy, the Golden Pinwheel and the Chen Bochui Recommended Titles, China and the NAMI Concours, South Korea, alongside winning at some of the most prestigious Indian award platforms like the Crossword Book Award, Publishing Next, FICCI, Comic Con, Neev, among others.

Richa Jha is a passionate advocate of picture books being a wholesome read for all ages, something she explores in depth in Picture Book Beats, her monthly column with the Indian Express.


Ruchi Shah is a book illustrator / wall artist. She is an alumna of University of the Arts, London and IDC, IIT Bombay. She received the Charles Wallace Scholarship in 2012 through the British Council.  After working in Yahoo as a senior designer, she quit in 2010 to work independently. She has illustrated more than 25 books that have been published multilingually. Some of her works include ‘Our Incredible Cow’, ‘A Book is a Bee’, ‘The Coward and the Sword’ and ‘I Am So Much More’. She also facilitates art workshops across different regions of India and Uganda. She received the British Council’s Social Impact Award in 2018 for her work. Apart from book illustrations created for Tulika Books, Harper Collins, Pickle Yolk Books and Pratham Books, Ruchi is also a muralist who has designed spaces for many organizations like Amazon, Quint-Bloomberg, Condé Nast and Freshworks. Her art explores places, spaces, materials and stories of everyday life. She creates images through printmaking, book-binding, murals, collage, assemblage and installation art.



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