Norah Burke's short story "Journey By Night" is set in a small village named Laldwani and the nearby town Kalaghat is fifty miles away from the village. Between the village and the town, there is dense forest populated by animals like elephants, tigers, snakes, and two rivers. The protagonist of the story , twelve year old Sher Singh crosses the dense jungle and two rivers in the dark night along with his ill younger brother Kunwar on his back to reach the hospital at kalaghat.
The story was set when India was under colonial rule and most of the villages in India did not have any medical facilities.When people were ill, home remedies were the only way out. If home remedies did not work, it meant death as hospitals were far off.
Norah Burke's story portrays India as it was many years back, but more than the portrayal of the backwardness of India, the short story is about the immense courage of a tewelve year old boy, about his love for his brother.
The story has many themes like courage, love and affection.