Well as it’s Easter, I decided to take a trip in my literary journey – a trip back to my childhood and recent childhood if I’m honest since I love to read stories for my own pleasure as well as reading them to my friends’ little tots.
One from my own childhood: UK
Spot the dog was my favourite dog from childhood and if I’m honest one of my favourite children’s characters of all time. The books are so simple but cleverly written and this story about Easter is no exception. Spot is very excited because it is his first Easter, and the Easter bunny has hidden some eggs for him to find!
This really is a delightful book, further enhanced by the occasional ‘helpful’ comment from the characters hidden behind the flaps. The Easter bunny also regularly checks on their progress and reminds the duo how many more eggs they need to find! Very cute and very fun.
Africa : Kirikou
The charming tale of Kirikou is based on West African folklore and depicts how a newborn boy, Kirikou, saves his village from the evil witch.
He’s not a normal boy, since he can speak and walk immediately after being born. He is determined to fight Karaba, the dreaded sorceress.
Kirikou wants to save his people, but at the same time he is determined to discover why Karaba is so wicked. He is a little boy who doesn’t agree with what the villagers seek to make him think and do; he wants to look further and find his own answers to his own questions.
I read this to my neighbours children and watched the animated movies that have been made. Even after the kids had gone to bed, I carried on watching since it was so cute and interesting. It is also educational about the African culture and I understood straight away why they remain so popular in France today.
Finland/Sweden – Moomins
Moominsummer Madness (Farlig midsommar, ‘Dangerous Midsummer’ in Swedish) is the fourth in the series of the Moomins books by Tove Jansson.
This is a charming series of books about a family of fairy tale characters, who are white and roundish, with large snouts. They live in their house in Moominvalley in the forests of Finland. And they love to have adventures. I love this book as although about Midsummer, it captivates the dancing and the free spirit which surrounds Easter and other holidays and it reminds me of the Swedish sun and the maypole.
It perfectly captivates the Swedish sense of freedom of expression, playful holidays and the role of children in holiday celebrations. Lovely!
Easter really is time for families and spending time with friends. I love spending time with friends with children as it gives me an excuse to read lots of interesting stories to them. I find myself becoming as immersed, if not more, so than they are!