Bjørn Sortland
What the heart remembers

Illustrated by Hilde Kramer.

Leonarda is a little girl who lives with her family in Mexico City. Her best friend is her sister Eva – but Eva is in the hospital, very ill. Every Friday Leonarda goes with her mother to clean the floors of a large blue house. While her mother works, Leonarda walks around in the house, which is full of strange things and paintings that she is not allowed to touch. Many of the paintings are portraits of the same lady. One day the lady starts talking to Leonarda. Her name is Frida, and they start sharing secrets with each other. Such as that Leonarda is afraid her sister will die, and that Frida is sick and has a big boyfriend called Diego. And while Leonarda helps Frida put on her lipstick, Frida comforts Leonarda when she suddenly starts crying.
What the Heart Remembers is a simple and moving story of a child coming to terms with the reality of death, through an imagined dialogue with Frida Kahlo. The book is beautifully illustrated with collage pictures that incorporates elements and motives from Kahlo’s own paintings.

Aschehoug 2009
32 Pages

So far sold to: German and Lithuanian

"A wonderful book for children about the world of a great female painter. It’s enchanting. The children’s book about Frida Kahlo’s world is a tiny dream factory in itself."
(Weltexpress, Berlin)

Bjørn Sortland

Bjørn Sortland

Author, reviewer and journalist, Bjørn Sortland is represented in a number of anthologies, and he has also written for radio and television. His authorship, which spans children's, young adults and picture books, has won him a variety of awards.

HILDE KRAMER (b. 1960) works as an illustrator and teacher. She has illustrated a wide range of children’s, young adults and picture books, some of her recent titles being Hvor er mamma (2007) og Gode grisen Gautes lille gråtebok (2007).

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Oslo Literary Agency
Evy Tillman
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Edited September 06, 2023 by Oslo Literary Agency