Oili Tanninen

0 - 2 years, Tate, Vintage Books


Words & Illustration by Oili Tanninen

A sweet story about a mouse called Hippu that invites a homeless dog called Heppu to stay with him. Together with many baby mice and a random chick, they enjoy a day filled with many simple and everyday activities. Little readers will be able to identify the ordinary activities on each page and relate to Hippu & Heppu as they go shopping, eat, play dress ups, go for a walk, watch television, have a bath, sleep and drive a car. 

Originally published in 1967, this book was republished by Tate Publishing in 2014. This book is so fresh and modern that it could easily have been created today with computer illustration. There is a lovely blurb at the rear of the book written by Tanninen that describes her inspiration and process for the book. It is lovely to read that the bold illustrations were created with collage, using torn and cutout  pieces of Japanese origami paper and Tanninen then filled in the images by drawing. 

The Finnish author and illustrator's three objectives for the book were as follows: The book had to be small and square and easy for a one year old to hold in their hands, cheap to print using only two colours (red and black); and the book had to tell a story with ordinary, everyday events that all children could relate to. 

Similar in size and equally bold, this book will sit well next to your Dick Bruna classics. A simple story with a sweet message and seriously cute illustrations. Perfect for the littlest of readers.