Created by the Swedish author Astrid Lindgren (1907 – 2002) and Swedish Illustrator Ilon Wilkland (born 1930), “Christmas in Noisy Village” is from the Bullerbu village book series. Bullerbu is the neighborhood of three farms, housing three families with seven children between them. The story is narrated by one of those children and tells of what the noisy seven were up to during Christmas time last year. They baked gingerbread snaps, brought firewood and Christmas trees from the forest, decorated, sang carols while making the outdoor pyramid lanterns out of snow balls with candles inside. Christmas presents have been wrapped and wrapping paper fastened with sealing wax and the “whole house smelled of wax”.
“Christmas Eve is the longest day of the year! All those hours you have to wait for your Christmas presents are what turn your hair gray,” Karl said.
Christmas Eve ends with a merry dinner of course during which Santa visits with a sleigh full of presents for all the children. Skiing and tobogganing all day next day complete this idyllic account of Christmas joys seen through the eyes of a child.
“Oh, isn’t Christmas a jolly time? I wish it would come oftener, don’t you?”
We have spoken about children’s literature giant Astrid Lindgren in the review of “A Calf for Christmas” (click here to read it). The illustrator for this book, Ilon Wikland was born in Estonia. During the Wold War Two she escaped to Sweden arriving as a refugee in 1944. In 1953 Wikland applied for a job as illustrator at a large publishing house Raben & Sjogren where she met with Astrid Lindgren. Astrid discovered and admired Ilon’s ability to draw fairy tales and the two started a life-long collaboration. Ilon has illustrated the largest number of Lindgren’s books. While Astrid was known saying that writing continually made her see inner pictures, Ilon Wikland is also known to draw for the child within her.
For other great Christmas and winter themed books click here.