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International Children's and Young People's Book Day is celebrated on 2 April in honour of the Danish writer Hans Christian Andersen, promoting a love of reading among children and young people. Andersen is known as the creator of some of the world's most widely read classic children's stories, such as "The Ugly Duckling" and "The Little Mermaid", which have been widely translated and adapted for theatre and film. Each year, a writer and illustrator is chosen to create a message and poster to promote the celebration in libraries and schools around the world. This 2024, Japan will sponsor the event with the theme "Cross the Seas on the Wings of Imagination", with Eiko Kadono and Nani Furiya in charge of the message and design respectively.

In addition to promoting reading, International Children's and Young People's Book Day also seeks to highlight the importance of creativity and imagination in children's development. Through stories and literature, fantasy and the ability to dream are stimulated, providing young people with tools to explore new horizons and face the world with curiosity and wonder. It is a day to celebrate the magic of books and their transformative power in children's lives.

At Libros de las Malas Compañías publishing house, we join this celebration with enthusiasm and commitment. We are proud to contribute to the dissemination of children's and young people's literature, offering stories that inspire the imagination and nurture the love of books. Among our collections, we would like to highlight the Growin up Books, which include illustrated albums for young girls and boys that have a double reading that you discover as you grow up. Among these books, we highlight Paporco, which tells the story of how a little boy, thanks to his intelligence, manages to defeat a small-minded ogre. Similarly, The True Story of a Mouse Who Never Asked for It debunks the myth of the little rat who was eaten because of his coquetry. In this book, the rat is not conceited, and teaches us how important it is to choose well who accompanies you on your journey. Another book that should be mentioned is The Mouse Who Longed for a Palace, which tells the story of a mouse who longs to live in a palace like a king, but soon discovers that building it is more difficult than he imagined, learning that true greatness does not lie in material possessions, but in other qualities. Elephant Island, meanwhile, tells the story of the polar odyssey from the perspective of Percy Blackborrow, an 18-year-old boy who was part of Sir Ernest Sahckleton's expedition. Finally, The Lonely King tells the story of a monarch who, after becoming the only inhabitant of his country, plays at not being alone and not being bored, and dreams of contemplating the stars in company.

Two other collections we would like to highlight are the Black Series and the Mini Black Series, where we offer the rich African and South American oral literature. For example, The Dragon That Ate the Sun and Other Tales from Lower Casamance is a collection of stories that explore various teachings and values through folkloric narratives. These stories tell of dragons that bring rain or snakes that turn into human beings, and aim to convey lessons about humanity, frugality, hard work and the importance of caring for one another. Similarly, The Zebu Man and the Little Sister and Other Tales from Madagascar is another collection of stories that teach important lessons about respect for elders and those who are different, the importance of collaboration and solidarity, and the ability to overcome challenges together. These stories also highlight the idea that there is always someone willing to help, even in times of difficulty, and show the importance of adapting to the unexpected and to life's surprises. The Rabbit Tales and Other Stories of the Albinos of Mozambique collects 29 stories told by albino people and their relatives in Mozambique, revealing the discrimination and challenges they face in Africa. Finally, we would like to highlight our book Five Hedgehogs and a Goat. Tales of the women of the Sahara, in which we find several stories told by Sahrawi women in the Tindouf refugee camps. These stories not only tell of a nomadic past where respect and solidarity are fundamental values, but also show the struggle of the Sahrawi people to survive in the desert after the occupation of their land, highlighting the importance of intelligence and perseverance, characteristics shared with the hedgehog.


Within the collection Illustrated Ancient Tales, which has beautiful illustrations, we highlight The Ash Lad and The Pea Giant. The first is a collection of Norwegian tales where the main character, Cinderella, is the younger brother who proves his worth through his generosity and wisdom. On the other hand, The Pea Giant is a collection of Ukrainian tales where characters such as Kotigorosko and The Old Woman with the Iron Nose face challenges where the smallest triumphs, justice prevails and wrongs are righted. Finally, we would also like to talk about two books that are part of the collection People Tell Stories Too. Firstly, Home is an illustrated, thoughtful and drawn album that seeks to portray the reality of many people who have lost their home at some point in their lives. Through its images, it invites the reader to reflect, be moved and understand the experience of those who find themselves in this situation, with the aim of generating empathy and awareness of their reality. Secondly, The Race is another illustrated album that tells the story of Nino, Nana and Nono, children who take part in a race where they discover that it is not important who comes first, but rather the different ways of running that exist.


In conclusion, International Children's and Young People's Book Day is a celebration that goes beyond promoting reading; it also highlights the importance of creativity and imagination in children's development. We, at Libros de las Malas Compañías publishing house, are proud to contribute to this celebration by offering stories that inspire the imagination and nurture the love of reading in children and young people. On this significant day, we encourage all children and young people to explore new worlds through reading and to discover the pleasure of immersing themselves in the pages of a good book.

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