NCERT Solutions for Class 9 English Chapter 28 - The House is not a Home

Question 1:

What does the author notice one Sunday afternoon ? What is his mother’s reaction ? What does she do ?


The author notices smoke coming through the ceiling. He runs out with his mother. Soon the whole house is on fire. The mother goes running into the house. She brings out a small box full of important documents. She runs back again into the house. She wants to bring out her late husband’s pictures and letters. She can’t let them go up in flames. She is caught in the flames. A fireman brings her out with great difficulty.

Question 2:

Why does the author break down in tears after the fire ?


The author had a lovely little cat. He was very fond of her. A fire breaks out and the cat is not found anywhere. The house is completely burnt down. The author thinks the cat has been killed. He breaks down in tears.

Question 3:

Why is the author deeply embarrassed the next day in school ? What words show his fear and insecurity ?


The author has lost everything in the fire. He is not in his school dress. He is wearing the tennis shoes of his aunt. He has no books or homework. It makes him deeply embarrassed. He says, “I didn’t want to grow up. ............. I just wanted to curl up and die.”

Question 4:

The cat and the author are very fond of each other. How has this been shown in the story ? Where was the cat after the fire ? Who brings it back and how ?


The author had saved the cat when she was a little kitten. The cat knew it was the author who had given her a good life. She never remained away from him. Sometimes, the author would get up very early in the morning. The cat would tag along after him. She would climb up his robe and crawl into the pocket. She would fall asleep there.
When there is fire, the cat runs away in fear. She goes a mile away. A kind woman takes her in. She works hard to find whose cat it is. At last, after a month, she brings the cat back to the author.

Question 5:

What actions of the schoolmates change the author’s understanding of life and people, and comfort him emotionally ? How does his loneliness vanish and how does he start participating in life ?


In the story, ‘A House Is Not a Home’, how do the schoolmates change the author’s understanding of life and people ?


The schoolmates know that the author has lost everything in fire. They make collections and buy for him all necessary things; books as well as clothes. They make friends with him. They help in rebuilding his house. A kind woman brings back his cat also. The author no longer feels lonely. He starts taking part in life.

Question 6:

What is the meaning of ‘My cat was back and so was I.’ ? Had the author gone anywhere ? Why does he say that he is also back ?


The author loses everything in the fire. He can’t find his cat also. He loses all interest in life. He wants to die. But his schoolmates come to his help. They get him everything that he needs. They help in rebuilding his house. A kind woman brings back his cat also. Thus the author regains his interest in life. That is why he says, “My cat was back and so was I.”