I cannot tell you how happy I was when, all of a sudden, out of the blue, an English translation of Jip and Janneke by Annie M. G. Schmidt showed up in our stores this spring. I don’t think there’s a more typically Dutch children’s book out there. Every single kid I know has been read these stories by their parents, and then has gone on to read them themselves as they learned their letters. And, judging by the way they’ve been flying out the door as gifts for any new baby in the world that has any kind of connection to the Netherlands, I can see most people agree with me and my nostalgia.
But enough of this ramble: David Colmer, the genius who translated the adventures of Jip and Janneke into English, will be reading from the books this coming Saturday, starting at 14.00 hrs, at the ABC Treehut in Den Haag. He’ll also read some translations of Annie M. G. Schmidt’s poems, and afterwards there will be a talk about the famous author, her work, and his work as a translator.