Outside in World | Browse Books
Use our Book Finder to search for books by Title (or part of the title), Author, ISBN, Age Range, Keyword, or Continent/Country. Then simply click the magnifying glass to start your search.
‘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)
A Boy Called Spoons
by Herbert Heckmann
Age Range: 6-8
Spoons, with his large ears and talent for eating, never really succeeds at anything. However rapidly his spoon whizzes from plate to mouth he always stays as thin as a beanpole; however hard he tries to save up for a bicycle, he never has enough money to buy one and however much he believes that a stone he throws up in air stays there, he just cannot make it happen. Spoons has so much boundless energy, curiosity and enormous enthusiasm for money-making schemes. Of course, he never manages to make any but his ideas are always ingenious.
At one point he charges his friends five pence each to listen to the astonishing snores of his grandfather. On another occasion, he arranges for his friend Paul to appear in the local park as the ‘Amazing Memory Man’ only to spend all the earnings from the performance on ice creams! Whether he is learning to play the violin or discovering that he has unexpectedly become a guinea-pig breeder, Spoons struggles on against all the odds.
German author Herbet Heckmann (1930-1999) has created a likeable character full of life. Nothing much goes right for Spoons but he is portrayed with vitality and subtle humour. The story is enhanced by lovely black and white drawings by Janosch, one of the best-known German-language children’s authors and illustrators.
Heckmann was born in Frankfurt and studied literature and philosophy at the University of Frankfort after which he became a lecturer in Heidelberg and America. He has written numerous short stories and some novels, one of which won the Literary Prize of the City of Bremen. Little Fritz, his other novel for children, was a contender for the German Children’s Book Prize.