Thursday, October 18, 2012

Children of the Northlights

Those of us who are a 'little' obsessed with children's books often get all out of sorts when we find out a really cool book we want (or love) is out of print.  Agreed?  Agreed.  It's so frustrating.  On the other hand... there's nothing that brings a smile to a book fanatics face like a beautiful reprinting of a cool vintage book.

That's what we have here folks.  An absolutely BEAUTIFUL reprinting of  Ingri & Edgar Parin d'Aulaire's Children of the Northlights .  Originally published in 1935 by the Viking Press it's available again, this time published by University of Minnesota Press.  I can't impress on you enough how beautiful this reprinting is, truly exquisite.

Look at those illustrations!  They are wonderful, in every way.  The content of this book is all about the Sami people of northern Europe.  It's a sweet story of a sister and a brother (Lasse & Lise).  We follow the two throughout the seasons of a single year; first with their nomadic family, then off to school for a portion of the year with many other children and finally reunited with their family.  The d'Aulaire's visited Norway in the early 1930's to research this book.  I learned SO much about this culture (for that time period).  Actually, after reading, it occurred to me that, though I have learned about the culture and history of the people who live/lived in the northern most reaches of North America, I know little to nothing about the people who have historically inhabited the northern reaches of the rest of the world.  Now I've had a glimpse of a few of those from northern Europe.  This book is a fantastic tribute to the Sami people.  And oh my, the illustrations!  Did I already mention that?
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PS You must visit the d'Aulaire's Children's Books FB page.  It's quite wonderful.  You'll find photos of the authors on their trip to Norway while researching this book.  Wonderful.

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