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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)
Emil and the Sneaky Rat
by Astrid Lindgren
Age Range: 6-8
The critically acclaimed Swedish author Astrid Lindgren was a prolific writer during her lifetime. Her books are now regarded as classics and many have been translated into English. The prestigious international Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award is named after her. Oxford University Press are reissuing Lindgren’s books so that a whole new generation of children can enjoy the exploits of such well-known characters as Pippi Longstocking, Emil, Karlson and Lotta.
After a rat is discovered in the house Emil sets out to catch it with disastrous results. Soon he has trapped his father’s toe in the mousetrap, poured pudding mixture on his head and locked himself in the woodshed. As the townspeople of Vimmerby await the appearance of a comet, Emil’s mishap with the mayor’s fireworks ensures there is a lively explosion of noise and colour in the sky over the town. Emil’s actions are often with the best of intentions especially when he arranges a party at Katthult Farm for the old people who live in the poor house and gives them all the food his mother has carefully prepared for Christmas.
Written between 1966 and 1970 these titles have been reissued with delightful black-and-white illustrations by award-winning illustrator Tony Ross. Fans of Francesca Simon’s ‘Horrid Henry’ will love the scrapes that Emil gets into. His adventures never stop and are always going wrong, but he doesn’t mean to be bad, it’s just that trouble follows him wherever he goes. The short, complete stories are perfect for reading aloud or alone.