Pettson tältar (Pettson Goes Camping) by Sven Nordqvist
Category: Children’s picture book
Synopsis: Findus (the cat in the green trousers in the picture) finds a tent in the attic and like all small children thinks camping sounds like a great idea. Along with fishing and climbing a mountain.
My Thoughts: Just as funny and sweet as always. The stories about Pettson and Findus are always predictable. Pettson invents something that doesn’t quite work, Findus does things the normal way. Neighbours think Pettson is insane for a)invention b)talking to his cat. Reader knows there is a perfectly true explanation for what occurs. But still every story seems fresh somehow.
Part of the freshness is absolutely the artwork which is perhaps the best part of the books for adults and children alike. Each page has its own illustrative artwork that goes with the story. At the same time within each illustration there is something else going on. Take for example the page where Pettson and Findus are camping, in it you can also see a small animal of undetermined kind fishing for ants. It is just a small picture on the side of the page, but finding these little extra pictures puts a whole new dimension on the reading experience. I would love to share some of the illustrations with you, but quite frankly copyright laws terrify me. There are some out on the net so if you are interested I suggest you google them. They are hilarious.
Findus the cat also acts like a small child. Always asking questions and getting into things. Slightly (okay, very) impatient but generally a good heart. Pettson, is an older man (gubbe in Swedish indicates an older man, close to or already retired) who invents things. Therefore he has a rather messy house with a workshop. He also has neighbours who thinks he is insane and most of the time he doesn’t care about this (except when they notice him doing the really weird stuff). This sounds like an odd setup but it really really works. And if you don’t believe me, many of the books are translated into English :D