I’ve worked here such a very long time that I can remember the days when every year, from November onwards, customers would ask us for Annie M.G. Schmidt’s Jip en Janneke in English to send to their little relatives abroad, and we would regretfully disappoint them; no translations had been available since the 1980’s.
Then award winning translator David Colmer (he shared the IMPAC Dublin Award with Gerbrand Bakker for his translation of The Twin) did what we had thought might be impossible: he translated those much-loved stories from Dutch to English, keeping the freshness and charm of the original simple prose without making them seem twee. His version of Jip and Janneke is perfect.
Following the success of Jip and Janneke, Colmer has translated two more Anne M.G. Schmidt books in quick succession: first was Pluk van de Petteflet, the book that, next to Jip and Janneke, is read to pretty much every Dutchman (or -woman) in the country when they’re little. The English edition is called Tow-Truck Pluck, and retains all the iconic Fiep Westendorp illustrations.
All three books, plus Jip And Janneke: Two Kids From Holland, which introduces small children to life in The Netherlands, are available at both of our stores. They’d all make lovely gifts for children this Christmas.