“When I close my eyes, I see herds of bearded beanieheads, sometimes bumping into each other.”
Author: Tomi Kontio
Illustrator: Elina Warsta
Finnish original: Isäni on hipsteri
Publisher: Teos Publishers, 2022
Genre: illustrated children’s novels (7+)
Number of pages: c. 80 pp.
Reading material: Finnish original, English sample, English synopsis
Nuutti and his friend Selma first hear about hipsters in fourth grade: it turns out that Selma’s mother has called Nuutti’s father a hipster. Nuutti doesn’t understand. What on earth is a hipster? Could his father really be one? They need to find out.
After applying an eclectic mix of research methods and spying the kids come across a lot of curious facts: most often, a hipster will deny being a hipster; a subspecies of a hipster is a blender; a hipster can try to conceal his hipster identity by changing his Cousteau beanie for a mysse cap; Selma’s mother is missing content in her life; Nuutti’s father provides content, at least from kale, ginger and fungus; and the headmaster of the school is longing for a particular stew his grandmother used to make.
The new children’s novel by Finlandia Junior-awarded Tomi Kontio catches the essence of being a kid. Solving the hipster issue grows into a warm-hearted story of longing, remembering, family and friendship. The beautiful illustrations by Elina Warsta are especially appealing for the young readers. The book was nominated for the Arvin Lydecken Award 2023.