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Reviews highlights - books for children

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Reviews highlights series

Books for Children

Including picture books, chapter books and more.

This summer we are opening up our reviews archive to highlight some recent gems in Swedish-language literature, in lists curated by genre and age group. Whether your interest is in poetry or picture books, searing literature or spine-tingling thrillers, we hope that our reviews highlights will help you to discover something new.

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Image credit: Geran de Klerk on Unsplash.

Book cover of Vi kommer snart hem igen by Jessica Bab Bonde
Graphic novel

Vi kommer snart hem igen (We'll be Home Again Soon)

by Jessica Bab Bonde, illustrated by Peter Bergting, reviewed by Fiona Graham

Natur & Kultur, 2018, 90 pages.

'[Vi kommer snart hem igen's] approach is well suited to young people, and particularly to those with limited literacy skills. Each testimony is narrated in the first person, using simple, spare language reflecting not only the age of the target readership, but also the fact that nearly all the protagonists were themselves children during the Second World War. Much of what they saw and experienced baffled them.'

Book cover of Jag, Fidel och Skogen by Lena Frölander-Ulf
Picture book

Jag, Fidel och Skogen(Me, Fidel and the Forest)

by Lena Frölander-Ulf, reviewed by Charlotte Berry

Schildts & Söderströms,  2016.

'This is not a typical troll tale from the north, full of beasties, ghouls and gloom. Rather, it is a thought-provoking exploration of confronting fears and preconceptions through encounters with whimsical forest folk and a homely troll in want of a quiet hearth. It makes for an enchanting winter read by the fireside.'

Book cover of Här är världen by Ylva Karlsson and Emelie Östergren
Picture book

Här är världen(Here is the World)

by Ylva Karlsson, illustrated by Emelie Östergren, reviewed by Charlotte Berry

Hippobokförlag, 2015, 28 pages.

'This whimsical voyage of exploration around the globe and into outer space and back combines the talents of author Ylva Karlsson and illustrator Emelie Östergren... Children will love exploring each detailed image and spotting balloons, planes, boats, birds, houses and children all over the place.'

Book cover of Överallt och ingenstans by Oskar Kroon
Chapter book

Överallt och ingenstans(Everywhere and Nowhere)

by Oskar Kroon, illustrated by Joanna Hellgren, reviewed by Fiona Graham

Brombergs, 2020, 134 pages.

'The book’s other over-arching theme is nothing less than our place in the universe... Yet this story is so well crafted, with so many true-to-life, often funny vignettes, that the great existential questions are never oppressive.'

Book cover of Doris drar by Pija Lindenbaum
picture book

Doris drar(Doris runs off)

by Pija Lindenbaum, reviewed by Fiona Graham

Lilla Piratförlaget, 2015, 32 pages.

'Anyone who can recall feeling hard-done-by as a young child will be able to relate to this quirky, gently humorous story, which so clearly demonstrates that a child’s feelings are just as strong as an adult’s – if not stronger. Lindenbaum’s fine book, which is suitable for reading aloud to pre-school children, lends itself to exploring the emotional needs of the very young.'

Book cover of Glömdagen by Sara Lundberg
picture book

Glömdagen(The Day of Forgetting)

by Sara Lundberg, reviewed by B.J. Epstein

Mirando, 2021, 48 pages.

'Sara Lundberg, an August Prize-winning writer and illustrator who was also shortlisted for the Greenaway Award, captures the emotions on her characters’ faces in bright detail.'

Book cover of Rassel Prassel Promenad by Hanna Lundström and Maija Hurme

Rassel Prassel Promenad (Rattle Rustle Walk)

by Hanna Lundström and Maija Hurme, reviewed by B J Epstein

Schildts & Söderströms (Finland), 2017, 32 pages.

'Rassel Prassel Promenad is a lovely collection of poetry that is just right for young readers and they, like the tree in winter with its leaves falling, will be sad when it is over.'

Book cover of Bobo i apskolan by Malte Persson
Picture book

Bobo i apskolan(Bobo Goes to Ape School)

by Malte Persson, illustrated by Mattias Adolfsson, reviewed by Nichola Smalley

Bonnier Carlsen, 2014, 59 pages.

'Best known as a poet, Persson is unafraid to use complex language and concepts with little explanation, a refreshing and unusual quality in a writer for children. It’s exciting to find a book that unapologetically engages children in this way; whether reading with adults or alone, I’m sure many young humans will be inspired by this young ape’s voyage of discovery.'

Book cover of Dyksommar by Sara Stridsberg
picture book

Dyksommar(Diving Summer)

by Sara Stridsberg, illustrated by Sara Lundberg, reviewed by B.J. Epstein

Mirando, 2019, 40 pages.

'Dyksommar is a gorgeous, moving book that is suitable for both children and adults. It reflects feelings many people have: being sad and not wanting to live with that pain, having a friend or relative who feels that way and having to deal with how those feelings affect the relationship, or, in some cases, experiencing both of these situations.'

Book cover of Stjärnorna ser likadana ut överallt by Marjan Svab
Books for children

Stjärnorna ser likadana ut överallt(The Stars Look the Same Everywhere)

by Marjan Svab, illustrated by Saga Bergebo, reviewed by Charlotte Berry

Rabén & Sjögren, 2018, 24 pages.

'Aimed at younger readers (aged 3-6), this picture book opens in a warzone on the very first page... Author Svab and illustrator Bergebo explore this trauma from the perspective of five-year-old Hala, capturing her bewilderment and disorientation as a refugee.'