Many people are familiar with Astrid Lindgren's beloved children's classic Pippi Longstocking but her lesser known novel, Ronia, the Robber's Daughter," is equally fantastic and highly recommended for those seeking a compelling adventure story starring a courageous and compassionate Mighty Girl.
The story is set in the early Middle Ages in Scandinavia and follows Ronia, a young girl growing up in a robber clan led by her father, Mattis. Ronia is a very spirited child, who spends her time exploring the countryside and taming wild horses. One day Ronia saves the life of the son of a rival clan chief and the two become friends. Eventually, the revelation of the children's close friendship leads to a massive feud between the clans and the decision by the children to run off together to the woods. In the end, the story ends happily as, inspired by the children's example, the adults eventually repent of their feuding and peace returns.
"Ronia" features an impressive heroine who is quite reminiscent of a young Katniss of The Hunger Games fame - she's brave and spirited, loyal to her friends, and determined to stay true to her beliefs even in the face of adult opposition. In "Ronia," not only has Lindgren created a rich engrossing fantasy world, she subtlety addresses themes of prejudice, gender, friendship, loyalty, and, most of all, the challenge of growing up and discovering what kind of person you want to be. Continue reading Continue reading