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Katharina shares happy stories with readers



  By Helen Pan

  Katharina Valckx began writing children's books when she was 40, yet she has already accomplished more than many other writers who started earlier. She has been nominated four times for the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, the most prestigious award a children's book author can hope to receive. Last Saturday, children's book author and illustrator Katharina met with readers at Wuhan World Trade Plaza. She said, every child is amazing. They are central figures of their own life, just as the name of her series Meet the Amazing One indicated.

  At the meeting, Katharina shared some stories from her series Meet the Amazing One, which is made up of 12 stories. One of the stories is about Carlo, a little duck who is suddenly informed that he is the hero in the story. Carlo is unsure about what he should do to please readers, and the realization that he is the hero becomes an overwhelming burden. Katharina said that the story illustrates that each child is unique and should be given space to explore their potential on their own rather than be pushed to attempt to meet the often unrealistic expectations of others.

  Katharina grew up in a village in the suburbs of Paris. She described herself as a very shy girl who was fascinated by art. Before she started writing and illustrating children's books, she worked for a number of years as an artist. Everything changed after the birth of her son. Katharina decided that she wanted to create stories that parents and children could read and enjoy together. "I do not want to read sad stories to children. Most of my works concentrate on friendships. I hope children can learn how to love others around them and find the beauty of the world through my works," said Katharina.

  Wuhan was the first stop on Katharina's tour of China. She also plans to visit Beijing, Shanghai, Changsha, and a few other cities. She hopes to spread joy and happiness with more readers. The Chinese versions of her works will be available for purchase domestically this month.