The 20 children's stories that you cannot miss this Sant Jordi

Novels, books of knowledge, essays, thrillers.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
21 April 2024 Sunday 11:02
6 Reads
The 20 children's stories that you cannot miss this Sant Jordi

Novels, books of knowledge, essays, thrillers... The proposals for this Sant Jordi are multiple and varied and have left our editorial table full to overflowing. Among them, stands out an unpublished Roald Dahl that the publishing house Gatopardo releases to remind us of the incredible wonders he did with his pen. Love, Boy brings together the letters he sent to his mother over 40 years, giving us an intimate view of the author and his personal growth as a writer. But it is not the only notable novelty. Below we put together a list of the 20 essentials for this Sant Jordi.

One of the large and entertaining game books with flaps and cardboard that the Combel publishing house works so well for the little ones. This time we are going on a trip to the big city and we stop at the traffic chaos caused by some works, and after overcoming it, we go shopping. Once in the city center, we took the opportunity to get acquainted a little at the cinema, the theater or the museum. We review the health and safety aspects that the city offers us (ambulances, firefighters, helicopters or police) and finally we will stay for a while in the city parks before returning home. A good plan, right? Also in Catalan.

A universe of sounds is what provokes this fun proposal by the German creator Benjamin Gottwald, who, through illustrations and without a single word, is capable of achieving the most unexpected sounds. Because this book roars, squeaks, breathes, yawns, snores, whistles... but only the reader can feel it. Although the game he proposes is to read it aloud and see who best imitates the flight of a paper airplane, the passage of a meteorite or the roar of a dinosaur. A challenge. Also in Catalan.

The multi-award-winning Italian illustrator Andrea Antinori presents us with an album where we will find all the characteristic elements of his artistic style, including some characters already present in other books (we are thinking, for example, of his particular extraterrestrial, suspiciously similar to E.T.E.) . Like all wordless albums, this one also has multiple layers of reading, and one of them is the one that tells us about a mountaineer's excursion to the heart of a forest where when night falls and the visitor closes his eyelids, the most beautiful things happen. unimaginable and extraordinary. So yes: the next time we go camping somewhere in the countryside, it is better to keep our eyes open at night so as not to miss any details of this parade of imagination and creativity.

An intrepid proposal in line with his previous work, The Excursion, which plays with collage about a traveling shoe that one day decides to leave home to see the world. When his young owner wakes up, he looks everywhere for him. He even hangs signs on the street. Because that shoe is not just any shoe, but the favorite of the child who looks for it so eagerly. But one day letters begin to arrive from all corners of the world, all signed by Zapato, in which he makes the boy participate in his great adventure. Also in Basque.

The slides arouse excitement and fear in equal parts. And Puss and Pata just changed the one they had in the park for one that is much higher and with many more curves. But Pata has seconds left to try it and Puss is a little more reluctant, so he makes up a thousand excuses, always in the name of Pata's safety and well-being to delay the moment of going down the slide. A fun adventure for the little ones about the challenges that scare us and how incredible it is to overcome them. With endearing illustrations that evoke a vintage touch. Also in Catalan.

Taking the dog for a walk has never been such an adventure, at least for Julián's dog. Well, his bitch Kika in this case. Without his master realizing it, an eagle has caught Kika, so now Julián walks an eagle, which later will be a tiger, which later will turn out to be a bat, who will turn the tables with an octopus when walking through the water, or with a gorilla, when Julián enters the jungle. And so on until we return home and discover again who we have on our leash. A cumulative and absorbing walk if there ever was one.

If you see a toad in a relaxing position, apparently half asleep, or rather looking bored, think twice before trying to cheer it up, as a good friend would do. The Maite Mutuberria toad has this boring appearance that neither the mosquito, nor the snail, nor the spider nor the ant can resist. Everyone wants to brighten your afternoon and boy do they brighten it up, although they rather brighten your belly. Until the grasshopper arrives and ends the afternoon in an unexpected and sobering way. A fun album, written in wooden letters ideal for early readers, and with some onomatopoeia to make reading aloud more entertaining. Also in Catalan.

A waste of imagination on a pleasant walk to the house of a birthday boy, Mateo. Father and daughter leave home with a gift, but how would they get to their destination if they were cats, or frogs, or magpies, or rhinos or aliens? The girl presents the game to her father, from whom she extracts the craziest and most imaginative responses. The Chilean creator Pato Mena plays a creative game with the illustrations, which carry the weight of the narrative, and where the author pours all of his imagination. Also in Catalan.

"It was not me". Does this phrase sound familiar to you? It is the one that Ellis and Arlie begin to pronounce after living an idyllic life on a desert island. They shared everything, they worked as a team, they cooked together, they fished together... Until one day things start disappearing and instead of investigating the matter, they start accusing each other. And the wonderful life on the island stops being so wonderful. Apparently a third character, a winged one with certain needs to build a nest, is responsible for all this. So after days of accusations, Ellis and Arlie decide to leave the island. But to do this they need to build boats, and they have never done anything alone. A book about friendship and teamwork in a very inviting tropical setting. Also in Catalan.

A beautiful story that tells about the origin of colors through an old fisherwoman who, far from catching fish, one day began to catch clouds. The fault was a dream: the old fisherwoman imagined a color that she had never seen and the next morning she woke up with a dandelion of the color she dreamed of. And so every night until she had seven dandelions, which, thanks to the cloud caught from her, exploded into a magnificent rainbow. Also in Galician.

This is one of those stories whose simplicity leaves one disarmed. The narrator's voice is that of little Mr. Care's son who introduces us to a man with a good-natured face and capable of making everyone smile. His task is to deliver letters to all the residents of the neighborhood. But he is not the only postman. He also dedicates himself to feeding the pigeons and taking care of his son. A tribute to paternal love and care that is often taken for granted without valuing it enough. Also in Catalan.

On several occasions we have expressed our predilection for books that bring the world of art to the little ones and this one we have in our hands is a great example. Catalan art historian Marta Ardite, founder of the original Ilustrarium gallery, specialized in contemporary illustration for children's books, starts this album with a simple question: what is an artist? There is no single way to feel like an artist or to express oneself artistically, so this book explores the figure of the artist and art from the free and naive perspective of a child that Mercè Galí from Barcelona has been able to illustrate so well. Also in Catalan.

The English illustrator Alice Melvin gives us a bucolic journey through a river following the adventures of Mouse, a character whom we already met in A Year in the Mouse Forest. As on that occasion, the book is a mixture of a contemplative journey and the discovery of nature, which becomes more exciting as it progresses and the pages unfold, offering us corners where we can continue investigating: the houseboat, the island camp , the little house on the river, the cabin in the woods... Life flourishes along the river through country illustrations that seem to have just been painted with colored pencils, with a great predominance of green. A trip that ends on the beach with the reunion of a friendship. We love the last page that the author dedicates to reproducing all the material that Mouse has brought on that trip, such as a book, pajamas, a cup, a picnic basket or a rope. Also in Catalan.

A new foray into children's literature by former Tricicle Paco Mir, this time to talk to us about something as current as rush. In a hyperconnected society, the 'now' has kidnapped us, children and adults alike, and the same thing happens to Mr. Rush, who is unable to enjoy what happens throughout this story. Because this story is explained through the illustrations, which are fun to stop at, because countless things happen in them. And another story is that of Mr. Rush, who passes by, barely seeing a foot and a piece of his leg, until in the end he is forced to stop. And look. And then everything makes sense. Also in Catalan.

What a surprise the Galician creator Nuria Díaz gives us when she rescues from memory one of the greats of cinema, such as Charles Chaplin. It is an illustrated biography that begins in 1894 with little Charlie's mother, Hannah, on stage, which is also the future actor's first contact with the public, and follows the steps that led him to immortalize his name within and off the big screen. An excellent story to read with the little ones, as a preliminary step to introduce them to his filmography, of which this biography gives a good account.

This story of human evolution focused on women is another of the great productions of the Barcelona publisher Mosquito Books, which these days is in luck, and no wonder: the publisher has recently been awarded as the Best European Publisher of the year 2024 during the Bologna Children's and Youth Book Fair, the most important in its area. Since publishing its first book in 2016, specializing in illustrated non-fiction books, better known as knowledge books, the publisher has not stopped winning awards. Father and daughter, Luis and Mia Cassany, are the founders of this small publishing house that now gives us a brilliant new look at the history of humanity but from an anthropologically feminine point of view, concentrating on the mark that women left on the future of history. An excellent work that also gives some notions of anatomy and that starts from Ardi, 4.5 million years ago, to Honor Frost, the precursor of underwater archeology who died in 2010, leaving us among her findings, the discovery of the ancient palace of Alexander Magno. Also in Catalan.

Haikus, calligrams, verses, poems, questions, answers... These are just some of the things that we can find in these Windows to the world that the Barcelona author Dani Espresate Romero has looked into to tell us what he sees. Sometimes in a humorous tone, sometimes solemn, sometimes melancholic... a game of rhythms whose ideal counterpoint are the colorful illustrations of Marta Comín. We are left with the last verse of the last poem, which urges the little reader to look out a window so that life fills her days with poetry. Also in Catalan.

After Geo-graphics, Barcelona-based creator Regina Giménez returns with another informative atlas about the world of mountains. Cartography, altimetry, geopolitics... thousands of details captured in the most unique ways with attractive graphics and colors that catch the eye and invite us to stay a while. Thus, we enjoy the 14 eight-thousanders, we live in the highest altitude cities such as Bogotá or Mexico City, we ski, we observe from the highest mountains in the world or we make pilgrimages to the biblical mountains such as Sinai or Zion. A great format with great information. Also in Catalan.

At the Bel Avenir Social Home, in Mangily (Madagascar), people embroider and tell stories. The girls sew just as their grandmothers and mothers did, and they tell each other the same stories that they told them. About the zebu man who ate children, about the handsome, handsome man, who turned out to be neither that much of a man nor that handsome, or about the greedy queen who kept the plate and the magic goat of a good man who only wanted to give. to eat their children. Stories from other latitudes that remind us in part of the magical realism that Latin American stories also capture and that come to us from the author, creator and oral narrator Ana Cristina Herrenos, also known as Ana Griott, and the illustrator Daniel Tornero, who has managed to turn those embroideries into the illustrations that accompany these magnificent stories. Stories that speak of bravery, goodness and evil in equal parts, magic and many truths and lies. But nothing is invented here and only what has already been told is told.

There are some books, few, that are to listen to, to dance to, to enjoy in other ways that are not just reading. This is one of them, signed by the Barcelonans Isis Boet and Bernat Muntaner, who make a playlist of their life songs. Faced with the arrival of a new member to the family and the earthquake that this entails, the authors need to anchor themselves to something that does not change, that continues the same as always, music being that refuge. But it is also a legacy, the inheritance of a passion that the musician Miqui Puig celebrates in the prologue with these words: “Long live the parents who have dinner with a vinyl every night and let the person who finishes the vegetables first turn around and put with a trembling hand, face B.” Well that's it, hurrah!