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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)
An Elsa Beskow Gift Collection
by Elsa Beskow
Age Range: Under_5
This stylish gift book set introduces young readers to one of Sweden’s best-loved children’s illustrator and contains five mini editions of some of her best known work.
Peter in Blueberry Land
First published in Swedish as Puttas Aventjr I Blabarsskogen by Albert Bonniers, Stockholm, 1901. It was first published in English by Ernest Benn Ltd in 1980. This edition was first published in large-size format by Floris Books in 2005.
Peter is looking for blueberries for his mother’s birthday but cannot find a single one until a strange tiny old man, no bigger than an apple, appears claiming he is the King of Blueberry Land and takes him to where there are an abundance of blueberries just ready for picking.
The Sun Egg
First published in Swedish as Solagget, by Albert Bonniers, Stockholm, 1932. It was first published in English by Ernest Benn Ltd in 1980. This edition was first published in large-size format by Floris Books in 2007.
When a large orange egg falls into the wood the elf believes it’s a sun egg, but soon she and her friends discover what it really is. There’s some lovely characterisation in this story: Happy Frog who runs the ‘Happy Frog’ restaurant along with his friend Anxious Frog, naughty Larch who is always playing tricks on everyone and Crooked-Root, the wise old gnome in charge of the wood all enhanced by the exquisite illustrations.
Emily and Daisy
First published in Swedish as Duktiga Annika. This edition was first published in English in large-size format by Floris Books in 2009.
Emily is going to the meadow to look after Daisy the cow and to try and prevent her escaping through the broken fence into a field of clover. How will she mend the fence and stop Daisy eating the clover?
Around the Year
First published in Swedish as Arets Saga in 1927. This edition was first published in English in large-size format by Floris Books in 2008.
With rhyming verse and her characteristic artwork, Elsa Beskow takes the reader through the months of the year. A charming book that can be dipped into again and again.
Ollie’s Ski Trip
First published in Swedish as Ollies Skidfard in 1907. First published in English in 1981. This edition was first published in English in large-size format by Floris Books in 2008.
When six-year-old Ollie is given his first pair of skis he is eager to try them out. At the first snow he sets off by himself and has all kinds of adventures meeting Jack Frost, Mrs Thaw (winter’s cleaning lady who cleans up before spring arrives and the King of Winter.
Swedish author and illustrator Elsa Beskow was regarded as the Beatrix Potter of Scandinavia because she was the first picture book creator to convey the idea of childhood. Her use of soft-toned watercolour illustrations are beautifully executed with such attention to detail that they are a joy to look at.