Reetta Niemelä & Salla Savolainen: Sinisen kärpäsen sirkus ja muita runoja [The blue fly circus and other poems]

3 February 2011 | Mini reviews, Reviews

Sinisen kärpäsen sirkus ja muita runoja naapurinötököistä
[The blue fly circus and other poems about neighbourhood creepy-crawlies]
Kuvitus [Ill. by]: Salla Savolainen
Helsinki: Otava, 2010. 40 p.
ISBN 978-951-1-24002-0
€20, hardback

Reetta Niemelä has provided a breath of fresh air in Finnish children’s poetry with her collections Makkarapiruetti (‘Sausage pirouette’, 2005) and Kakaduu (‘Cockatooo’, 2009), whose onomatopoeic sounds and whimsical grammar are reminiscent of children’s language play as they learn to speak. This book opens up the secrets of the world of earthworms and the tiniest of insects to the reader, revealing natural wonders at (literally) grass-roots level. The most delightful aspect, however, is to be found in its illustrations: Salla Savolainen employs a painstaking, richly nuanced woodcut technique, which puts a natural finishing touch to the collection. This sort of delicacy has not been seen in children’s book illustration in a very long time! Savolainen’s images seem light, breezy and lively – each little bug has its own charismatic personality.
Translated by Ruth Urbom


No comments for this entry yet

Leave a comment