March Monthly Round-up

Welcome to our monthly round-up for March 2022. What a month it’s been! Here’s your one-stop digest of news from the universe of world literature for younger readers.


There are a few changes happening here at Project World Kid Lit. Ruth Ahmedzai Kemp is stepping down as co-editor of the blog, but fear not, she isn’t going far. She will still be on Twitter and Instagram, and working behind the scenes, focusing on schools and libraries outreach as well as looking at the organizational side of things.

We are delighted to welcome Johanna McCalmont to the editorial team! Johanna has been a long-standing contributor to World Kid Lit blog and has curated many special features over the last couple of years, including #ReadingAfrica week 2021 and the recent #SeekingaPublisher feature. We’re thrilled to have you on the team, Johanna!


The Swedish picture book artist Eva Lindström received the 2022 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award (ALMA). According to Gecko Press, who have published two of her books in English translation, Eva Lindström has written and illustrated many highly acclaimed picture books. She has been nominated once for the Hans Christian Andersen Award and eleven times for the August award which she won in 2013. Lindström was born in 1952 and lives in Stockholm. She began her career as a comic artist and cartoonist, and has had a major influence on the new generation of comic book artists now emerging in Sweden.


IBBY announced the winners of the 2022 IBBY Hans Christian Andersen Award: Marie-Aude Murail from France for Writing and Suzy Lee from the Republic of Korea for Illustration. See the IBBY website for profiles of these two feted children’s book creators.

The 2022 IBBY-iRead Outstanding Reading Promoter Award was awarded to: Zohreh Ghaeni from Iran, nominated by the IBBY sections in Canada and Iran, and Jane Kurtz from the United States nominated by USBBY (Jane is co-founder of Ready Set Go Books which publishes Ethiopian Amharic / English bilingual books). More details of the award here

The 2022 IBBY-Asahi Reading Promotion Award went to: Pinnguaqta, a programme of Ilitaqsinniq – The Nunavut Literary Council, from Canada. More details here

And the 2022 IBBY Honors List was also announced this month, a biennial selection of outstanding books which honors the work of authors, illustrators and translators in 63 IBBY member countries. We were delighted to see Ruth Ahmedzai Kemp‘s translation of The Raven’s Children by Yulia Yakovleva (Puffin) recognized, alongside fellow translator into English David Bowles for The Sea-Ringed World: Sacred Stories of the Americas by María Garcia Esperón and illustrated by Amanda Mijangos (Levine Querido). Huge congratulations to both, and all the other children’s book creators nominated!


The Sheikh Zayed Book Award 2022 shortlists have been announced.

The Children’s Literature shortlist features:

  • Syrian author Maria Daadoush whose previous books The Fly Flew Over the Pond and Diary of a Martian Kid have been translated to English; she is shortlisted for Loghz al Kora al Zujajiya (The Mystery of the Glass Ball)
  • previously shortlisted Moroccan writer Raja Mellah is nominated for Maw’idi maa al Noor (My Date with the Light) about a girl born with a rare disease who is determined to reach her dreams; and
  • Syrian writer Bayan Al-Safadi for his collection of poetic tales Shams Tadhak (A Laughing Sun)

Winning titles are eligible for translation funding to encourage the appreciation of Arabic writing in other languages. The winner is announced in late April 2022.


The BolognaRagazzi Awards (BRAW) were announced at last week’s Bologna Children’s Book Fair. 2215 books from 62 countries and regions were submitted to the 2022 edition. As well as the awards for fiction, non-fiction, opera prima (for unpublished authors and illustrators) and comics, this year also included a special category dedicated to Poetry. There is also a special New Horizons award given to a particularly innovative book. Find out more about all the winners here. You can also browse the BRAW Amazing Bookself, an exhibition dedicated to 100 publishing gems from among the submitted titles. The winning titles (pictured above) were:

  • Fiction: À qui appartiennent les nuages? Text by Mario Brassard Illustrations by Gérard Dubois La Pastèque, Canada, 2021. Fiction special mentions:
    • ¿Qué tiene un bosque? Text and illustrations by Yael Frankel Claraboya Ediciones, Chile, 2021
    • Summer Text and illustrations by Suzy Lee BIR Publishing Co., Ltd., South Korea, 2021
    • Fechamos Text by Gilles Baum Illustrations by Régis Lejonc Les Éditions des Éléphants, France, 2020
  • Non-Fiction: Monstres Sacrés – Voyage au cœur des volcans Text by Julie Roberge Illustrations by Aless MC La Pastèque, Canada, 2021. Non-fiction special mentions:
    • Para que serve? Text by José Maria Vieira Mendes Illustrations by Madalena Matoso Planeta Tangerina, Portugal, 2020
    • Des trucs comme ci, des trucs comme ça Text and illustrations by Bernadette Gervais Éditions des Grandes Personnes, France, 2021
    • Father’s big hands Text and illustrations by Choi Deok-Kyu YUN Edition, Republic of Korea, 2020
  • Opera prima: Les Reflets d’Hariett Text and illustrations by Marion Kadi L’Agrume, France, 2021. Opera prima special mention: Det var en gång och blir så mycket mer Text and illustrations by Johanna Schaible Lilla Piratförlaget, Sweden, 2021, and Fluidoteca Text and illustrations by Berta Páramo Litera libros, Spain, 2021
  • New Horizons: Laimes bērni Text by Luīze Pastore Illustrations by Evija Pintāne Liels un mazs, Latvia, 2021
  • Poetry winner: Immenses sont leurs ailes Text by Murielle Szac Illustrations by Nathalie Novi Éditions Bruno Doucey, France, 2021. Poetry special mentions:
    • Corazón de pájaro Text by Mar Benegas Illustrations by Rachel Caiano AKIARA books, Spain, 2020
    • Sagan um Skarphéðin Dungal sem setti fram nýjar kenningar um eðli alheimsins Text by Hjörleifur Hjartarson Illustrations by Rán Flygenring Angústúra, Iceland, 2018
    • Vom Flaniern und Weltspaziern Texts by Elisabeth Steinkellner Illustrations by Michael Roher Tyrolia-Verlag, Austria, 2018
    • Collection “Les Poèmes”: Ici ou là et ailleurs aussi; Bois profonds; Pierre d’un jour; Poèmes en peluches; Macadam, courir les rues; Poèmes par-dessus les toits; Thoulathiyat, haïkus arabes; Terrains vagues; BUS 83; Les chaises Vv.Aa (Mo Abbas, Gaëlle Allart, Edith Azam, Ramona Bǎdescu, Gabriella Corcione, Gaëtan Dorémus, Odile Fix, Jérémie Fischer, Raphaële Frier, Bernard Friot, Benoît Guillaume, Géraldine Hérédia, Amélie Jackowski, Julien Martinière, Pierre Soletti, Clothilde Staës, Walid Taher, Christian Tortel) Le port a jauni, France, 2018–2021
  • Comics early reader: Bienvenue à Bibiville Text and art by Éponine Cottey Éditions 2024, France, 2021. Special mention: Hvem rumpet brunosten? Text by Erlend Loe Art by Kim Hiorthøy Cappelen Damm, Norway, 2021
  • Comics middle grade: Teatro di natura Text and art by Michelangelo Setola Canicola, Italy, 2021. Special mention: Nowhere girl Text and art by Magali Le Huche Dargaud, France, 2021
  • Comics young adult: Polly Text by Fabrice Melquiot Art by Isabelle Pralong Éditions La Joie de lire, Switzerland 2021. Special mention: Le grand vide Text and art by Léa Murawiec Éditions 2024, France, 2021


Last summer we shared the news that Hungarian bookshop chain Líra Könyv was fined for selling the Hungarian edition of a set of Spanish picture books about children with same-sex parents by World Kid Lit co-founder Lawrence Schimel and illustrator Elīna Brasliņa, translated into Hungarian by Anna T. Szabó. This month we heard the fantastic news that Hungary’s highest court has ruled that fining the bookshop was illegal! Read more details here.

The books, Early One Morning and Bedtime, Not Playtime! have now been published or are forthcoming in 46 editions and 37 languages, are also helping to fight anti-LGBTQ+ bias elsewhere around the world.


Wales’s oldest children’s book award – the Tir na n-Og Awards – have announced their shortlists for both Welsh and English language awards. The winners will be announced on 20 May 2022.


The KPMG Children’s Books Ireland Awards have also revealed their shortlist this month with one Irish-language book making the cut. Six awards are up for grabs and the winners will be announced on 24 May 2022.

Ukrainian children‘s books

Millions of refugees and, among them, many children have fled their homes only with the minimum essentials. These children need to find comfort, these children need to continue being children. They need to play, learn, read. The city of Kharkiv, where the main printing works are located, has been heavily bombed, making it impossible to print books in Ukraine. The Ukrainian Book Institute, supported by the Federation of European Publishers and the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, has launched a crowdfunding appeal with the goal of printing hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian children’s books in Europe, to allow children to keep the link with their homeland. All the money collected will be managed by the UIB, which will choose the titles and coordinate with local relays to print and distribute the books to the children. See the website of the Federation of European Publishers to donate.

With current events in Ukraine never far from our thoughts, we have the following reading suggestions:


Book Island have created some fabulous videos to accompany their books. Currently available are resources to accompany The Golden Cage by Anna Castagnoli, illustrated by Carll Cneut and translated by Laura Watkinson, and The Garden of Inside Out by Chiara Mezzalama, illustrated by Régis Lejonc and translated by Sarah Ardizzone. The videos include interviews with the authors, illustrators and translators as well as drama activities and a full narration. Keep an eye out on their website because more resources for their other books are also on the way!


Seven impossible things before breakfastIt’s So Difficult by Gurudi, translated by Lawrence Schimel, (Eerdmans). Review by Julie Danielson

Stories that stay with us Blue² by Luna Orchid (Scholastic). Review by Maureen Tai. “… one of the most unique and authentic, upper middle grade/young adult, verse novels I’ve ever read.”

#WorldKidLitWednesday book reviews at Global Literature in Libraries Initiative:

  • The Wonder of the World Leaf by Summer Edward, illustrated by Sayada Ramdial (Collins Big Cat, 2021), set in Trinidad; review by Laura Taylor
  • Here the Whole Time by Vitor Martins, translated from Portuguese [Brazil] by Larissa Helena (PUSH, an imprint of Scholastic, Inc., 2020); review by Klem-Marí Cajigas
  • Colorful by by Eto Mori, translated from Japanese [Japan] by Jocelyne Allen (Counterpoint Press) ; review by Nanette McGuinness

The Times, Children’s Book of the Week: Elephant Island by Leo Timmers, translated by James Brown (first published in Belgium) “A refutation for anyone who thinks their island is too full to accommodate outsiders.” 

Book reviews at Outside In World this month:

  • Elephant Island by Belgian author and illustrator Leo Timmers, with the English text by James Brown (Gecko Press)
  • It’s My Rubber Bandi by Japanese author and illustrator Shinsuke Yoshitake, translated by Sofiane Kohen (Thames & Hudson)
  • Never, Not Ever! – translated by Jill Davis, from award-winning author and illustrator Beatrice Alemagna (Thames & Hudson)
  • All’s Happy That Ends Happy – the seventh Chapter book about Dani by Swedish author Rose Lagercrantz, translated by Julia Marshall and illustrated by Eva Eriksson (Gecko Press)  
  • Bedtime for Bo – by Norwegian author Kjersti Annesdatter Skomsvold, translated by Kari Dickson, illustrations by Mari Kanstad Johnsen (Enchanted Lion)
  • Blaze and the Castle Cake for Bertha Day – by French author and illustrator Claude Ponti, translated by Alyson Waters and Margot Kerlidou (Elsewhere Editions)
  • The Day Saida Arrived by Spanish author Susana Gómez Redondo, illustrated by Sonja Wimmer, translated by Lawrence Schimel: the story of Saida, a Moroccan girl who shares her Arabic language with her new friend as she learns English (Blue Dot Kids Press)
  • Every Color of Light, written by Japanese author Hiroshi Osada and translated by David Boyd with illustrator Ryōji Arai’s stunning artwork (Enchanted Lion)
  • Feather –by French author and illustrator Rémi Courgeon, translated by Enchanted Lion’s publisher Claudia Zoe Bedrick (Enchanted Lion)
  • It’s OK, Slow Lizard – by Korean author Yeorim Yoon, translated by Chi-Young Kim, and illustrated by Jian Kim (Yonder, Restless Books)
  • The Mermaid in the Bathtub – by Israeli author and illustrator duo Nurit Zarchi and Rutu Modan, translated from Hebrew by Tal Goldfajn (Yonder, Restless Books)
  • My Life at the Bottom: The Story of a Lonesome Axolotl – by Finnish author Linda Bondestam, translated from Swedish by A. A. Prime (Yonder, Restless Books)
  • The Tale of the Tiny Man – This much-loved classic Swedish picture book written in 1979 by award-winning author Barbro Lindgren is a celebratory edition, translated by Julia Marshall and with new illustrations by Eva Eriksson (Gecko Press)
  • When Spring Comes to the DMZ – by Korean author and illustrator Uk-Bae Lee, translated Chungyon Won and Aileen Won (Plough Publishing House)
  • Bruno the Beekeeper – by Czech author and illustrator Aneta Františka Holasová and translated by Andrew Lass. (Candlewick Press)
  • Niños: Poems for the Lost Children of Chile – In Chilean author María José Ferrada’s book translated from Spanish by Lawrence Schimel, readers learn upfront that 34 children under the age of 14 disappeared and were arrested and executed during the 17 years of dictatorship in Chile that started in 1973. (Eerdmans Books for Young Readers)
  • The Blue Book of Nebo, a multi-award-winning YA novel by Welsh author Manon Steffan Ros, who translated it into English (Firefly Press)


KQED‘Our Own Journeys’: The Growing Push for More Bilingual Children’s Books in Schools and Libraries by Chloe Veltmam

Publishing PerspectivesBatchelder Award: Submissions Now Must Name #TranslatorsOnTheCover.

This article has a misleading title, as the new criteria for entry stipulate that the translator must be named, but not necessarily on the cover. The new criteria state: “The translator(s) shall be named on all titles submitted for consideration. The translator(s)’ name(s) shall appear, at minimum, on the title page along with the author(s)’ name(s), and ideally the translator(s)’ name(s) shall appear on the cover along with the author(s)’ name(s) as well.” Find out more about the ALA Batchelder Award for children’s literature in translation on World Kid Lit (by Paula Holmes) and at SCBWI (by Avery Fischer Udagawa)

IBBY UK Sinan Hallak’s Illustrations: A School Book’s Endless Metamorphosis

Goethe Institut Finland – DRIN project: In Our Words – “… this publication has been developed to frame visions for a more plural children’s literature from a perspective of Colour, or rather from a multitude of BIPOC perspectives.”

Podcasts and videos

Kirkus Reviews – Episode 257: The International Episode. Interview with Korean translator Anton Hur followed by young readers’ editor Laura Simeon, fiction editor Laurie Muchnick, and editor-in-chief Tom Beer who offer their international reading recommendations for early 2022. There was a great summary of this by Avery Fischer Udagawa on the SCBWI blog

Centre for Book Cultures and Publishing – Five go to France: Panel discussion with editor Alexandra Antscherl and translator Emma Page to mark the publication of Hachette’s new Famous Five graphic novel series (originally in French) by Béja and Nataël, a talented father-and-son team of graphic novel experts.

On Translating Annika Thor: A Conversation with Linda Schenck, interview by Avery Fischer Udagawa on the SCBWI blog

Upcoming events

Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art: “Translating Picture Books”
28 April 2022, 4-5pm UTC
Join Ruth Ahmedzai Kemp, Daniel Hahn, Lawrence Schimel, and Helen Wang as they answer questions about being a translator and the translation of picture books.
Free event. Sign up here


As part of the London Book Fair Sharjah Market Focus, there is the chance to hear from Emirati children’s book author Dubai Abulhoul at the British Library on the evening of 5 April 2022 at 7pm UTC. The event is on Emirati cultural heritage and storytelling with Dr Abdulaziz AlMusallam, Dubai Abulhoul and Mohammad Al-Murr, chaired by Nikita Gill. The event is free, go here to register for a place.


Also at London Book Fair next week is a discussion about Spanish Literature Translation Incentives and Grant Opportunities. Children’s books are included, so publishers, if you’re going to LBF, please take note:
Literary Translation Centre
Tuesday 5th April 13:20 – 14:05 UTC

ICYMI on World Kid Lit blog this month

New Releases

The language in brackets is the source language for the translation. Please email us with any corrections!

Picture books

Leilong’s Too Long! by Julia Liu, illus. Bei Lynn, tr. Helen Wang (Gecko Press) [Chinese]

The Book of Questions by Pablo Neruda, illus. by Paloma Valdivia, trans. by Sara Lissa Paulson (Enchanted Lion) [Spanish/English bilingual, Chile]

The Tale of the Tiny Man by Barbro Lindgren, il. Eva Eriksson, tr. Julia Marshall (Gecko Press) [Swedish]

The Book That Kibo Wrote, by Mariana Ruiz Johnson, tr. Lawrence Schimel (Eerdmans) [Spanish]

Pops by Gavin Bishop (Gecko Press) [English and te reo Māori]

Our Fort by Marie Dorléans, tr. Alyson Waters (The New York Review Children’s Collection) [French, France]

Lisette’s Lie by Catherina Valckx, tr. Anthony Shugaar (Gecko Press) [Dutch, Netherlands]

A Is for Bee: An Alphabet Book in Translation, created and translated by Ellen Heck, (Levine Querido)

Middle Grade

Our Own Little Paradise by Marianne Kaurin, tr. Olivia Lasky (Arctis) [Norwegian, Norway]

Chloe #6: Green Thumb by Greg Tessier, tr. Nanette McGuinness, Charmz [French, France]

Magical History Tour #8: Vikings by Fabric Erre, ill. Sylvain Savoia, tr. Nanette McGuinness [French, France]

The Bird Master by Karin Erlandsson, translated by Annie Prime [Swedish, Finland]

The Pearl Whisperer by Karin Erlandsson, translated by Annie Prime [Swedish, Finland]

Thanks for reading and please do share this round-up of world literature for young people with your colleagues and friends with an interest in children’s literature.

And please send any news or book reviews for the April round-up (focusing mainly on translated children’s books) to us at