The Emma Press has acquired English-language rights to two Latvian children’s titles and a landmark series of Latvian children’s picture books. For these titles, they received a grant from the Republic of Latvia’s Ministry of Culture.
Publisher Emma Wright said: ‘I am thrilled that we are continuing our relationship with two of Latvia’s leading children’s publishing houses, Pētergailis and liels un mazs, and to be bringing some gems of contemporary Latvian literature to an English-speaking audience. ’
Publisher Emma Wright bought the UK English language rights to the Bikibuks series, which will be called Bicki-Books for the English language market. These are postcard-sized picture books for children, with each book featuring the work of a different Latvian illustrator alongside a famous Latvian poem. The poems are translated by Žanete Vēvere Pasqualini, Uldis Balodis and Kate Wakeling.
The celebrated Latvian poet Inese Zandere, editor-in-chief at the publishing house liels un mazs, edited the Bicki-Books series, and Rūta Briede, influential artist and tutor at the Art Academy of Riga, served as the art director. There were 101 Bicki-Books published in Latvia between 2012 and 2017, when the series concluded.
To tie in with the English language publication of a selection of the Bicki-Books series, Wright plans to release a series of English-language originals in the same format, featuring traditional nursery rhymes.
THE DOG WHO FOUND SORROW
Publisher Emma Wright bought the UK English language rights to Latvian title Suns, kurš atrada skumjas (The Dog Who Found Sorrow), which is a picture book about sadness and hope, featuring a dog who tries to find out why his city has been overtaken by smog, causing widespread sorrow. This book is written by Rūta Briede and illustrated by Elīna Brasliņa.
The publication of The Dog Who Found Sorrow follows Queen of Seagulls, published by The Emma Press in 2018, which was written and illustrated by Briede and translated into English by Brasliņa.
THE GIRL WHO LEARNED ALL THE LANGUAGES OF THE WORLD
Wright also bought UK English language rights to the Latvian title Meitene, kura mācēja visas pasaules valodas (The Girl Who Learned All the Languages of the World), written by Ieva Flamingo. Flamingo’s previous book was the children’s poetry collection The Noisy Classroom, published by The Emma Press in 2017.
Wright bought rights for the Bicki-Books series and The Dog Who Found Sorrow from liels un mazs, a leading Latvian children’s publisher which was recently shortlisted for the Bologna Prize for the Best Children’s Publishers of the Year (Europe). The rights for The Girl Who Learned All the Languages of the World were bought from Pētergailis, one of the biggest publishing houses in Latvia.
The Dog Who Found Sorrow is translated by Elīna Brasliņa, and will be published in November 2018. The Girl Who Learned All the Languages of the World is translated by Žanete Vēvere Pasqualini and will be published in in December 2018.
The Bicki-Books series will start publication in December 2018, with the first six titles:
- Bicki Bucki, by Jānis Baltvilks, illustrated by Reinis Petersons, translated by Žanete Vēvere Pasqualini and Kate Wakeling, ISBN: 978-1-910139-91-2
- Calm beasts, by Herberts Dorbe, illustrated by Gita Treice, translated by Žanete Vēvere Pasqualini and Kate Wakeling, ISBN: 978-1-910139-93-6
- Everything goes topsy-turvy, by Maija Laukmane, illustrated by Sabine Moore, translated by Žanete Vēvere Pasqualini and Kate Wakeling, ISBN: 978-1-910139-95-0
- The door wizard, by Pēters Brūveris, illustrated by Paulis Liepa, translated by Žanete Vēvere Pasqualini and Kate Wakeling, ISBN: 978-1-910139-96-7
- Ice Cream, by Arnolds Auziņš, illustrated by Līva Piterāne, translated by Uldis Balodis and Kate Wakeling,
- Furious Fly, by Valdis Grenkovs, illustrated by Zane Zlemeša, translated by Uldis Balodis and Kate Wakeling, ISBN: 978-1-910139-98-1
The Dog Who Found Sorrow
ISBN 978‑1‑910139‑14‑1 / RRP £12.00 / 88pp / 210 x 150mm / 4-colour interiors
The Girl Who Learned All the Languages of the World
ISBN 978‑1‑910139‑13‑4 / RRP £10.00 / 44pp / 200 x 255mm / 4-colour interiors
The Bicki-Books series:
RRP £4 each / 105 x 145mm / 32pp / 4-colour interiors