The Books

When We Were Alone in the World

by Ulf Nilsson
Illustrated by Eva Eriksson

One Potato Review

A little boy comes home from school (early, it turns out), finds the door locked with nobody answering, and naturally assumes his parents have been hit by that truck, probably from reading too many Scandinavian picture books. (Not for nothing, but remember Roald Dahl once killed off some parents with a rampaging rhinoceros escaped from the zoo.) As it happens, this sort of runaway imagination also comes with some very real and pragmatic rewards: the boy liberates his toddler brother from “playschool,” builds another house where they can live – at least until college –  complete with mossy blankets and a television fashioned from a cardboard box that doesn’t presumably work because the batteries are dead. “Anyway there’s nothing good on TV these days,” shrugs the boy. Surprising and true.

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