My December picks for The Year in Books are new editions of two Hans Christian Andersen fairy tales with stunning illustrations by Sanna Annukka.
As a child I loved reading fairy tales and pretty much wore out my Ladybird editions of Cinderella, The Princess and the Pea and the utterly terrifying tale of Chicken Licken. As an adult I have always intended to read more fairy tales, particularly those written by Angela Carter, so when I spotted these beautiful Christmas tales by Hans Christian Andersen, my inner child decided they would be my December picks for The Year in Books.
Illustrator, Sanna Annukka is a Brighton based printmaker and textile designer born to a British father and Finnish mother. Family visits to Finland, and the many magical stories and myths related to this part of the world, influence her work illustrations and she currently designs for Marimekko whilst continuing to develop her own range of prints.
The Fir Tree is a strange ‘grass is always greener’ cautionary tale and whilst I should really know the story of The Snow Queen I have yet to start this book so can’t offer any further insight! It is the illustrations that lift these beautiful editions to another level and if all the words were taken away I think you could quite easily figure out the story. I particularly loved this page where the mice sit in the branches of the fir tree and listen to it tell stories…
…isn’t it wonderful!
I won’t show any more spoilers* as I think these are books you should discover for yourself. Both books, published by Hutchinson, should be readily available from your local bookshop as they have become a bit of a hit this festive season and I suspect they will appear in many stockings on Christmas morning! Do you have recommendations for any fairy tales which I must read as I’d love to hear from you if so?!
The Year in Books is run by Laura from Circle of Pine Trees and you can see what others are reading this month over on her blog. Do feel free to join in and add your blog post to the list.
*Okay, one more…