Writers get excited when their books are translated into other languages. This is because writers want their works widely read. Lots of novels have been translated but only a few children’s books have enjoyed similar favor. Little Cricky, originally written by Domnita Georgescu-Moldoveanu recently got translated to English by Liliana Hoton and Miruna Nistor. The interesting part is that Litle Cricky is a story in verse, and the versification shows in the English translation as well.
Domnita Georgescu-Moldoveanu left her country during the time of communism to settle in France. It was there that she wrote the majority of her works notwithstanding she was a member of the Writer’s Union from Romania. Until her demise in Paris in 2013, she tried a whole lot of genre, from news to poems to novels to children’s tales. Upon her death, her sister, Natalia Georgescu-Moldoveanu, who lives in Ottawa, continued to extend her legacy by continuing to publish her books.
The treasures on the pages of Little Cricky
The book is about the journey of little cricket in search of his violin that was stolen by the winter wind. Every page of Little Cricky holds a unique feeling for children. This beautiful book is able to transport children through a diverse emotional journey: anger, anticipation, expectation, joy, love, and sadness. These feelings are what little children recall with fondness later in life. Childhood is an important time in life and Little Cricky is one of the beautiful books that evoke strong feelings and adds value to this stage of life.
‘Never give up’ is the priceless lesson reechoed on every page of the book. No doubt, everyone needs this reminder as we sail through the stormy waters of life, particularly children. Little Cricket also extols other universal values like courage, friendship, happiness, loyalty, passion, and the beauty of the soul.
Comparing Little Cricky to other children books
It wouldn’t come as a surprise to have Little Cricky shortlisted for the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award. No doubt, this is the most coveted award in Canadian children’s literature with a prize of $50,000. The shortlisted stories have one thing in common besides being written for kids of up to 12 years; they evoke more than a single emotion, which is the case with Little Cricky.
One of the books shortlisted for the 2018 award was Nokum Is My Teacher, written by David Bouchard and illustrated by Allen Sapp. Like Little Cricky, the boy in this book had a taste for adventure. The boy asks his Nokum (grandmother) a lot of questions about what life outside their community feels like. For the boy, it became a struggle between fitting into life and respecting tradition, just as for Little Cricky it is a struggle to be without his violin.
Little Cricky also has a lot in common with Little You, written by Richard Van Camp illustrated by Julie Flett, which reminds us about the strengths and vulnerabilities of beings small, and about the childlike innocence that makes us dare to be someone great. Little You also talks about the power of having the support of family and community from a tender age and about the importance of being loved unconditionally, the same issues that Little Cricky touches along the story.
Other children’s book on the 2018 award list areHow Raven Stole the Sun, Fatty Legs, and Sometimes I Feel Like a Fox, All having an animal as the main character, just like Little Cricky has insects as protagonists. Which also makes it an insects mini-dictionary for kids. Little Cricky is currently available at Agora Books and you would definitely want to add it to your reading list.