Clementine Loves Red (2017)
Illustrated by: Bohdan Butenko
Beautifully published by Pushkin Children’s Books, Clementine Loves Red, has been translated by Zosia Krasodomska-Jones and Antonia Lloyd-Jones – who is on a mission to introduce some of the best Polish children’s literature to an English-speaking audience.
The most recent Polish edition was published in 2008 by Wydawnictwo Dwie Siostry, in their Mistrzowie Ilustracji (Masters of Illustrations) series. Both Polish and English versions can be described as artist books for families. I certainly had great pleasure in reading it and enjoying Butenko’s simple and elegant illustrations. The prose flows effortlessly and the suspenseful adventure holds the interest. The book also contains very thoughtful observation of children and their relationships with adults and animals. The realities of the 1970s in a small Polish village are gently conveyed, including a local boy’s knowledge of the forest – an understanding which the holiday-makers and visitors lack. A perfect book for reading out loud to children and very pleasurable for reading on your own.