Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Onawind Blue in Children’s literature


You know how badly represented boats often are in children’s books. Backwards rigs on unstayed masts, inconsistent wind direction. We’ve all had a good laugh, or cry, over them. So it was not only an honour to have my little boat immortalised on the page but also nice to see that the wind and rig are in harmony.

The illustrator is Elena Val and the book, with original text in Catalan by Teresa Duran, is called ‘Banyeta’ meaning 'little horn', more or less. The Spanish edition is titled ‘Diablote’—‘little devil’ and the English version, avoiding all religious overtones, plumps for ‘Benedict’. ‘Benedict is published solely in Canada by Groundwood Books / House of Anasi Press of Toronto, Ontario.

Without wanting to spoil the story for prospective readers it’s about a little devil who leaves his firey underworld in search of a more clement atmosphere only to find that other places—the north pole, the desert, the jungle—also have a fairly inhospitable, monotonous climates. And then he discovers the sea...

This is Elena’s first published book and the first step in carving herself a well-deserved niche as an illustrator of children’s books. She is also part of the creative team that has designed ‘Posa’t un conte’ an educational tool for young children that explores creative ways of exploring and solving emotional and communicative issues. Elena loves the sea and has been sailing for about two years. She’s always game for a sail or row in Onawind Blue.


Elena Val rowing Onawind Blue.

12 comments:

Marta said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Marta said...

Elena's illustrations are made with love and fantasy, as she always does it all since our common childhood. I'm so happy that finally someone decided to publish her drawings so that her work is known by a wide public. She has a lot of invisibe work which deserves to be seen and appreciated. A big hug to you all.

Dale said...

That is just delightful!
My kids are just of that age and love reading and the sea. Worth grabbing for the Onawind Blue reference alone.

Manelcas said...

Where can I buy this book ? Thks.

Ben said...

Hola Marta! Estic d'acord sempre m'han encantat els dibuixos d la Elena, tan senzills i tan profunds.
Una forta abraçada
Ben

Ben said...

Manelcas, to buy the book in English I think you'll have to go to the Groundwood web which is linked in the post. To buy it in Spanish or Catalan you'll have to watch this space while I find out.

La Mar d'Amics said...

Benvolgut Ben,
Des de Palamós estem contents de veure que tornes a estar actiu.
Interessant article!

Elena said...

Marta, Ben, em fareu posar vermella!
Com m'agrada això de tenir amics.

Quality Children's Books said...

This looks like a great book. As a preschool teacher and wooden boat builder, I'm always on the lookout for stories like this. Thanks for sharing this.

Anonymous said...

Ei, Ben, Benvingut! En Joan ja em va dir que haviau parlat.
Interessant post! Una abraçada molt forta.
Marta

Giacomo said...

Beautiful!

Alvaro said...

Vaig comprar el conte fa uns mesos i en veure-ho pensí que era un vaixell molt paregut al d'en Ben. Però avui m'ha fet un click el cervell i he recordat aquest post. Quina alegria saber que tinc una ilustració del Onawind's blue de veritat a la meua casa!

A mi i a la meua xiqueta ens han agradat molt les ilustraciòns d'Elena. Enhorabona, segueix aixina.