Stein Erik Lunde / Øyvind Torseter: MY FATHER’S ARMS ARE A BOAT

Eg kan ikkje sove no/My Father's Arms are a Boat

Eg kan ikkje sove no
Published by Samlaget, 2008

The boy in this winter night story cannot sleep; therefore it’s good to have daddy there to answer all his questions. Like are the red birds sleeping? Do the foxes eat their food? And most importantly: is mummy sleeping? In this starry and quiet picture book, we meet a confident father and an anxious boy who take care of each other in the vast winter night. From 4 to 10 years.

Illustration from "My Father's Arms are a Boat".

Stein Erik Lunde og Øyvind Torseter received the Ministry of Culture’s Prize for the best picture book in 2008. The jury said:  “Big feelings expressed in a minimalist fashion. The text and illustrations communicate with and complement each other to create a rich and complex whole in which the details are the most important. Exciting, evocative and poetic.” The book was nominated to the Deutscher Literaturpreis 2011.

US reviewers wrote:  “A young boy, grieving and unable to sleep, climbs into his father’s steady arms to find warmth and reassurance in this luminous story about loss, love and healing. […] A breathtaking masterpiece.” — STARRED REVIEW, Kirkus Reviews “[Lunde’s] writing is lovely in its spareness, but also hard edged, even in the story’s many moments of tenderness. “We look straight into each other’s eyes. His eyes, black as night, are dark and deep in his face.”) Pain is never far from the surface, yet when the boy’s father assures him, “Everything will be all right,” in the final scene, readers will believe him.” — Publishers Weekly  (The American title is “My father’s arms are a boat”.)


Torseter, Ø0yvind 2009 (c) Une Hofgaard
Øyvind Torseter
Stein Erik Lunde (c)_cedric_archer
Stein Erik Lunde

Stein Erik Lunde (b. 1953) has written several award-winning books for children and youths. Øyvind Torseter (b. 1972) is an outstanding and highly acclaimed illustrator and picture book-artist. He has won a wide range of awards for his work, including The Bologna Ragazzi Award.

Translations: Sold to China, Czech, France, Germany, USA, Spain/Argentina, Korea, Vietnam.