White Ravens: illustra

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Latvia (Latvian) - 2004 - 204
Cielēna, Māra (text)
Naumovs, Aleksejs (illus.)
Pasakas par diviem
(Tales about two)
Rīga : Apgāds Ali S, 2003. 70 p.
ISBN 953-6613-49-2
(German parallel ed.: Märchen über zwei. Rīga : Apgāds Ali S, 2003. Transl. Aleksandrs Šmits)
Relationship between two parties – Imagination
In her modern fairy tales and fantasy stories, popular Latvian author Māra Cielēna tells poetic tales full of imagination about the relationship between two parties as diverse as personified objects, human beings, pictures that have come alive, and natural phenomena. The illustrations, rendered in a style that perfectly complements the stories, entrance the readers with their brightly glowing colours. Although the stories themselves are rather unspectacular, they are delightfully unconventional and take a completely unexpected turn at the end. (10+)

Russia (Russian) - 2004 - 205
Moric, Junna (text)
Antonenkov, Evgenij (illus.)
Dvigajte ušami : dlja detej od 5 do 500 let
(Wiggle your ears : for children from 5 to 500)
Moskva : Rosmen, 2003. 148 p.
ISBN 5-353-01079-5
Nonsense poetry
Junna Pinchusovna Moric (i.e. Junna Petrovna Moric, born in Kyiv in 1937) is one of the most important contemporary Russian poets. In this book, she tells short, mostly bizarre tales in verse, narrated from a child’s perspective with a lot of details. Some stories are centred around children’s experiences told from an unexpected point of view, some answer various »why«-questions, others are puzzles or nonsense verses. In the final of four chapters, acrostics explain different terms. The author perfectly manages to present simple things in a way that renders them interesting – not only for children. Just as in her poetry for adults, she starts from specific everyday-life situations and uses them to point out a deeper reality behind them. The amusing illustrations by Evgenij Antonenkov, painted in a mixture of naturalistic and surrealistic styles, have an international flair without denying their Russian origin. (7+)

Slovakia (Slovak/German) - 2004 - 207
Bodnárová, Jana (text)
Bartusz, Juraj (illus.)
SakoHoess, Renata (transl.)
Čo som videla pri jazere : básničky, ktorým sa nechce rýmovať = Was ich am See zu sehen bekam : kleine Verse, die sich nicht reimen wollen
(What I got to see at the lake : small verses that do not rhyme)
Prešov : Baum, 2003. [48] p.
ISBN 80-88987-66-9 b
Lake – Animals – Plants – Humans
This bilingual book written in lyrical prose aptly reflects the changing atmospheres of lake Starnberg (Southern Germany). The imaginative descriptions of author and illustrator revolve around natural phenomena, objects they have found on the shore, animals that live in or around the lake, people they met there or who have a special relationship to the lake. Readers will discover fish and shells, ducks swimming on the lake, fireflies, a bug in a calyx, music, a boat house, rain, fog hovering over the lake, or an angel who appears above the water on Christmas Eve. The dynamic, monochrome blue watercolour drawings underline the lake’s atmosphere evoked in the stories. (5+)

Slovakia (Slovak) - 2004 - 208
Droppa, Boris (text)
Štrelingerová, Petra (illus.)
Rak Ohnivák a straka bez zobáka
(Fire-crab and the beakless magpie)
Bratislava : Perfekt, 2002. [52] p.
ISBN 80-8046-218-6
Nonsense verse – Nature – Country life
This book gathers a humorous array of witty poems for children: poems about stubborn dachshunds, fish in Slovak rivers, moonlight, the peacock with two hundred eyes on its feathers, the magpie who loses its beak when it attempts to eat the fire-crab, the dance of the purple heron, the turkey’s ‘song’, other animals, and nature in general. They all are a funny mirror of country life in Slovakia. In his nonsense verses, which often have multiple rhymes, the author plays with words, their sounds, and their meanings, and gives them a philosophical touch. The illustrator’s energetic, bold chalk-drawings formidably express the dynamism and vibrancy of the nature poems. (5+)

Slovakia (Slovak) - 2004 - 209
Groch, Erik (text)
Paľo, Ľuboslav (illus.)
Tuláčik a Klára
(Stray and Klara)
Košice : Tichá Voda, [2002]. 77 p.
(Knižná diel?a Timotej)
ISBN 80-88849-33-0
Dog – Girl – Friendship
Little Klara, who lives alone in her house, stumbles across a small dog who has lost his way in the forest. She takes him home with her and Stray decides to stay. Since dogs and girls have different needs, they have to reach a few compromises. Stray realises that a dog is not able to do everything a human being does, that not all the things people do are necessarily fun, that dogs can do a lot that humans can’t, and that they find different things funny. The readers, too, might be inclined to question whether all the things people usually consider so important do really mean so much – except for love, of course. The lovingly designed book is accompanied by atmospheric watercolour illustrations in shades of brown and green. (6+)

Slovenia (Slovenian) - 2004 - 210
Prap, Lila (text/illus.)
Poga?nik, Jelka (text)
Ljubljana : Mladinska knjiga, 2002. [36] p.
(Zbirka žlabudron)
ISBN 86-11-16282-x
Animals – Characteristics
In this picture book, the authors present one particular animal on every double-page spread and ask a question – which might seem a bit silly at first – about each: Why does the walrus have a beard? Why does the giraffe have such a long neck? Why do hyenas laugh? Why does the crocodile cry? Why does the elephant have a trunk? etc. Apart from a few nonsense answers, these questions are explained in a way that is both easy to understand and scientifically wellfounded. Thus, this book is more than just a standard non-fiction book. The witty and simple illustrations drawn with black outlines provide a realistic picture of the animals portrayed in this varied selection. (4+)

Slovenia (Slovenian) - 2004 - 211
Prešeren, France (text)
Peklar, Andreja (illus.)
Turjaška Rozamunda
(Rosamund of Turjak)
Ljubljana : Prešernova Družba, 2003. [28] p.
(Poezije Franceta Prešerna v besedi in sliki)
ISBN 961-6512-00-5
Middle Ages – Winning the bride – Turkish Wars
With this picture book, the publishing house Prešernova Družba presents a newly designed and illustrated edition of a romance by the Romantic author and most important Slovenian poet France Prešeren (1800-1849). When trying to win over the beautiful but arrogant Rosamund of Auersperg (Turjak), the Count of Scharffenberg (Ostrovhar) praises Rosamund’s beauty, which is only surpassed by that of Leila, the Bosnian pasha’s sister. Rosamund therefore tells him to kidnap Leila and free a few captured Christians. In Bosnia, however, he falls in love with the pasha’s sister and brings her home as his bride. As for Rosamund, she is forced to enter a convent. The book enchants its readers both with its elegant typographical design and the intensive colours of the illustrations. (7+)

Belgium (Dutch) - 2004 - 212
Gaudesaboos, Pieter (text/illus.)
(Little red rag)
Tielt : Lannoo, 2003. [26] p.
ISBN 90-209-5358-3
Solitude – Fantasy
This graphically outstanding picture book tells the story of the girl Lapje (Little Rag), who always wears red during her journey through life. As she travels around, she is never alone, or is she? The red that Roodlapje (i.e. Little Red Rag) wears attracts bulls that recur in all possible ways in pictures, illustrations, and even in a computer game’s fragment, frightening and reassuring the girl at the same time. The nostalgic-looking pages with the – sometimes rhyming – descriptions of events, alternate with texts written by the main character herself that seem to consist mainly of associations with the colour red. This picture book lends itself particularly well to reading with adults. (6+)

Belgium (Dutch) - 2004 - 213
Guldemont, Agnes (text)
Cneut, Carll (illus.)
Mijnheer Ferdinand
(Sir Ferdinand)
Wielsbeke : Uitg. de Eenhoorn, 2003. [28] p.
ISBN 90-5838-173-0
Search – Philosophy
Sir Ferdinand feels as if he had lost something, but he doesn’t know what. He searches his entire house for it – in vain – but the feeling that something is missing stays with him. Therefore, he continues to search in the city. He meets odd people who make him realise that, when you look around carefully, you continuously find special things. The unusual, delicately drawn, slightly surrealistic illustrations, executed in a mixed technique, represent solitude and the loss of reality in a striking way. The poetic language isn’t easy to understand but fits in very well with the illustrations. A brilliant, artistic picture book for connoisseurs. (7+)

The Netherlands (Dutch) - 2004 - 218
Goossens, Jesse (text)
Dit is theater
(This is theatre)
Rotterdam : Lemniscaat, 2003. 239 p.
ISBN 90-5637-565-2
Theatre – Cabaret – Musical
This extremely thorough and serious non-fiction book about the many aspects of the world of performing arts is arranged according to topics. It gives an introduction to theatre, cabaret, and musicals, but also to the world of stage designers, make-up artists, and costume designers. Classical plays and highlights of the history of performing arts are described in a well-structured way. In addition, the book also includes various interviews, in which several celebrities are given the floor. Text, illustrations, and design are perfectly adapted to young readers. The book takes the readers on a true voyage of discovery through the world of illusions, the world of performing arts. (12+)