Storm and Light is the beautiful story of the friendship between two children who couldn’t be more different. It is Ilja Karsikas’ third book, and the nomination comes only a week after Karsikas received an honorary mention for the Rudolf Koivu Prize with his second book, The Unicorn.
Storm and Light is the story of two best friends who couldn’t be more different: one, Storm, dreams of seeing the world, while the other, Light, prefers daydreaming and imagination as means of exploration. Storm and Light is a tender story of friendship and love. The individual stories of the characters interlace, and big questions of love and human connection overlap aphoristically with shared memories of lovely summer day.
The jury have motivated their choice as follows:
“A beautiful little story about two very different friends: one of them dreams of going out into the world, while the other prefers to stay at home. The work, written in a rich and poetic language is a beautiful portrait of differences and their ability to complement each other. Karsikas has written a timeless story about leaving and staying, about deep friendship that draws one back from the ends of the world.”
The Arvid Lydecken Prize has been awarded since 1969 and is assigned to an outstanding children’s book and the winner is chosen by the Finnish Children’s Books Authors’ Association.
Ilja Karsikas (b. 1978) is an illustrator and graphic designer known for his conversation-sparking children’s books. Storm and Light (spring 2023) follows several picture books, including The Unicorn (2022) and Under the Moon (2020), a collaboration with Aki-Pekka Sinikoski. In addition to his visual work, Karsikas creates music and is involved in any number of artistic projects.
Very warm congratulations to Ilja and the other nominees, and fingers crossed!