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Etana Editions

Not My Strawberries!

Not My Strawberries!

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ORIGINAL TITLE: Oman maan mansikat
AUTHOR: Aino-Maija Metsola
ILLUSTRATOR: Aino-Maija Metsola
FORMAT: Hardback • 210 x 270 mm • 32 pages • 4/4 colours
ISBN 978-952-7105-66-5
AGE 3+

In the late summer heat, Irma the mouse enjoys her peaceful garden where the strawberries are just ripening. To her horror, she notices that someone has been eating her strawberries. Intruders! Angry Irma sets out to find who it is, and encounters a hungry snail family who have had to leave their homes. Their distress softens greedy Irma and she decides to help them.

Aino-Maija Metsola's debut as a children's author deals with human emotions such as fear, selfishness, sharing and compassion as well as timely social issues in a subtle way suitable for small children. The story is hopeful and tinged with warm humor and her watercolor illustrations bring out insightfully the heat of summer bursting with delicious warm-toned colors. 

emotions – prejudice – emphaty – hunger –migration

• The Most Beautiful Books in Finland 2020

Italian, French

Looking at this visually simplified picture book, one can't help but wonder with satisfaction the possibilities of children's literature to quietly participate constructively in social discussion.
Written in a child-friendly way, Oman maan mansikat is a story about the so-called nimby phenomenon [...], which refers to the selfishness of people, who protect their own territory and on principle oppose things that are foreign to them.
The snails wandering into Irma's garden can be interpreted quite concretely as foreign species of the garden, grove snails, or refugees who have been forced to leave their homeland. This is precisely how a children's book is able to open up a conversation with very young children in a way that is suggestive and constructive!
Both the text and the illustration underline gently, but clearly, how the change in Irma's spiritual life values also improves her own well-being.

- Päivi Heikkilä-Halttunen, Lastenkirjahylly

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Get to know the author

Aino-Maija Metsola

Aino-Maija Metsola

Aino-Maija Metsola's work is guided by curiosity and love for the intuitive painting and crafting process. Her works show the influence of the surrounding nature and everyday observations, as well as his passion for colors, details and rhythm. Aino-Maija uses a diverse range of techniques from watercolors to markers, collages, felt-tip pens and masking colors when creating paintings, patterns and illustrations on various surfaces, such as textiles, clothes, dishes, stationery and books.
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