Swedish Children’s Author Sofia Gad Looks To Inspire Young ReadersNovember 13, 2018
When your native tongue is not the official language of the country you reside in, it can be tough to find books and other written materials that aren’t inthat language – often times, you’re limited to a small “Foreign Language” shelf with only a couple of titles.
That’s where Sofia Gad comes in.
Noticing a need for Swedish children’s literature available in the United States, Gad decided to create a book that takes young readers on an alphabet journey, using the Swedish language and animals for characters. “En bokstavsresa i djurens värld” aims to create a bonding experience through reading together while teaching young readers a little bit from another culture.
We caught up with Gad, who lives in Minnesota, to learn a little more about her and her book.
Tell us a little bit about yourself: Where are you from, what do you do and what’s your Swedish connection?
I’m a Swedish writer who grew up in Gothenburg and Stockholm.
What got you interested in writing children’s books?
My mother always read to me when I was a kid. Astrid Lindgren, Elsa Beskow and Lennart Hellsing are some of the authors. The books she read both inspired me to read and to start writing. With “En bokstavsresa i djurens värld,” I wanted to contribute to the world of books I loved so much growing up. I hope “En bokstavsresa i djurens värld” will give families as much joy as we had reading when I was a kid.
What is “En bokstavsresa i djurens värld” about (and what is the title in English)?
“En bokstavsresa i djurens värld” (“An Alphabetic Journey in the World of Animals”) is an ABC book with an animal theme. Most of the content is based on unusual facts about each animal. They all rhyme and have a funny twist. You’ll learn things like rats can be tickled and some turtles can breathe through their butt. 😊
You mentioned “En bokstavsresa i djurens värld” is written in rhyme. Do you prefer to write in this style?
I think rhymes make things easier to remember, they “stick” in a different way and hopefully awaken kids’ curiosity and interest in reading in general. When it’s easy to learn you feel you have a talent for it and it makes it more enjoyable, especially when you’re a kid and you’re exploring what things you like and don’t like. If my book can get even just one kid more interested in reading I’m happy.
Where can you get a copy of the book?
You can get your own copy of “En bokstavsresa i djurens värld” from stores in the U.S. (mostly in Minnesota), Sweden, Finland and England. You can also get a copy directly from me. Send me an email with your contact information (name and mailing address) and I will get back to you as soon as possible. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What’s next? Any cool new projects coming up?
I’m writing a new ABC book, this time it’s to tickle kids’ imagination to be creative. They’re funny and they rhyme, just like in “En bokstavsresa I djurens värld.” They are all about an imaginary world of nonsense. Olle Osynlig (“Olle Invisible”) lives in a house made of jelly in a town that doesn’t exist; Dripparen Dropp (“Runny Nose Dropp”) has a younger brother who lives inside of his big nose; these are some of the oddities that await.