Independent publisher The Emma Press has bought the UK English language rights to several Latvian children's books thanks to a grant from the Republic of Latvia’s Ministry of Culture.
Publisher Emma Wright acquired the ‘Bikibuks’ series, which are postcard-sized picture books of famous Latvian poems, illustrated by different Latvian illustrators, from Latvian publisher liels un mazs. The series will be translated by Žanete Vēvere Pasqualini, Uldis Balodis and Kate Wakeling and published as Bicki-Books in English, alongside a series of English-language nursery rhymes in the same format.
Wright also struck a deal with liels un mazs for The Dog Who Found Sorrow (Suns, kurš atrada skumjas in Latvian), which is a picture book about a dog who tries to find out why his city has been overtaken by smog by Rūta Briede and Elīna Brasliņa. Wright had previously published another book by Briede, entitled Queen of Seagulls.
Finally, Wright acquired The Girl Who Learned All the Languages of the World (Meitene, kura mācēja visas pasaules valodas) by Ieva Flamingo, from Pētergailis.
“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,” said Wright.
The Emma Press will publish The Dog Who Found Sorrow, translated by Brasliņa, in November 2018. The Girl Who Learned All the Languages of the World, translated by Žanete Vēvere Pasqualini, will follow in December 2018, as will the first six books in the Bicki-Books series.