From 2 years: catharina valckx – good day, dear world!

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From 2 years: Catharina Valckx – good day, dear world!

Photo: W. Bönisch

Nina goes out with her duck in the morning and greets all her friends. Because it will be a good day.

How will the day be good? Of course, if you greet him and his friends with joy. Nina does it in the picture book "Hello, dear world!" by Catharina Valckx, 2015 at Beltz & Gelberg appeared before. Together with her duck Mo, she leaves in the morning to greet all her friends: the tree, the valley, the bridge. So they go to the sea. When they come back it is already evening.
In itself, the book idea is meant nicely. If you start the day in a friendly way or are generally towards others, you will also be treated friendly. But in the implementation, especially in the narrative text, there are many places that simply open up. For example, Nina encounters a Gremish fly. The resulting dialogue leaves a little doubt as to how to deal with the job.

"We are being followed", says Mo
"Oh yes? From who?", asks Nina.
"From a fat fly."
"Hello, fat fly", says Nina.
"Why are you chasing us??", asks Mo.
"Just for the fun of it. I want to see where you’re going", says the fly.

Photo: W. Bönisch

What bothers? Nina always greets all friends very friendly. The narrative tone suddenly changes here. She calls the fly fat. Whether the fly is actually thick or not, it is not a friendly expression. In addition, the bold is introduced here without any further reference to the action. One wonders what the scene is about.
Similar to this point, it bumps here and there in the plot development. In the end you are confused as to what the book actually wants. It should be emphasized positively that the narrative style is mainly based on dialogues – ideal for reading aloud. Of course, due to the constant greeting, there are always repetitions that don’t bother.
The illustrations are child-like and tell the book well even without text. The details are limited to the essentials. The figures and objects are drawn more in simple lines. Catharina Valckx has limited herself to the four colors blue, yellow, red and brown. This creates an economical, calm impression.

Photo: W. Bönisch

In the end, this book leaves a very ambivalent, irritating impression. The plot is somehow hanging on the ropes. Yes, being kind is a virtue. But the story falters, it revolves around itself. The question of why Nina travels so far, what the sea has to do with greetings, remains unanswered. So many discrepancies or gaps here and there make it appear incomplete.

Catharina Valckx: Good afternoon, dear world!
Beltz & Gelberg, Weinheim 2015
ISBN: 978-3407795991
Translation: from the French by Julia Süßbrich
Features: four colors, 26 pages, hardcover
Price: € 12.95
Reading age recommended by the publisher: from 2 years

Can be ordered directly from the publisher or anywhere in the book trade.
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Christina Cherry
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