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‘We need the literature of other countries to expand our
horizons and stimulate our ideas. Without it, we are not only
diminished, we are starved’
(The Times, Magnus Linklater 29/06/05)
Pancakes for Findus
by Sven Nordqvist
Age Range: 6-8
Farmer Pettson is determined to bake Findus, (his unusual cat who can speak and wears stripy green dungarees) a big stack of pancakes for his birthday. The story that follows is a catalogue of disasters as Farmer Pettson lurches from one crisis to another. First he finds he has no milk or sugar so he needs to cycle to the shop to buy some. Then his bike has a puncture and his tools are in the locked shed and the key is at the bottom of the well! How is he ever going to give Findus his birthday treat?
This is a comic tale with delightful characterisation. Farmer Pettson appears to be extremely eccentric and his neighbour Gustavsson certainly thinks he is, but there is always a logic to everything he does even if it is not always straightforward. Sven Nordqvist cleverly incorporates subtle humour in the conversations between Findus and Farmer Pettson and the illustrations of Findus’ body language are equally expressive. The exquisitely drawn illustrative narrative create a world around the characters of Pettson and Findus together with the Farmhouse and surrounding countryside, but there are also some comical sub-narratives of the other creatures who live around the farm.
This is the first of a series of nine books about Pettson and Findus by award-winning Swedish author and illustrator Sven Nordqvist. It was first published in 1985 in Sweden and has been translated into 44 languages, finally available in English published by Hawthorn Press.