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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)
Felix After the Rain
by Dunja Jogen
Age Range: 6-8
Felix drags an enormous black suitcase behind him wherever he goes. Every day it becomes heavier and heavier with all of his sorrow hidden inside. One day, a small boy opens the suitcase while Felix is sleeping; the sky turns grey and Felix finds himself in the middle of a storm. When he wakes up the tears he has been carrying for so long suddenly flow like rain. Now he feels free and unencumbered. He can be happy again.
Felix After the Rain is a clever, philosophical tale from Slovenian picture book creator Dunja Jogan, translated by Olivia Hellewell. The story encapsulates the feelings Felix experiences so well. The black suitcase is a metaphor for his melancholy. Once the box is opened a transformational change occurs as it unleashes all the unhappiness locked deep within him. The evocative watercolour artwork mirrors Felix’s mood: the opening of the suitcase shows a swirling storm in black and grey hues followed by bright bursts of colour as Felix is finally set free. A moving, simple story that tackles sadness and depression in a very gentle and positive way.
Felix After the Rain was awarded the ‘Pen Translates’ grant which celebrates diverse writing from around the world. Part of Tiny Owl’s Hope in a Scary World series which gives children space to explore difficult subjects in a hopeful way.