|Some more books
WHOLE NINE YARDS
generation its own war
title Met huid en haar - rights Querido
- age 15+ - 3.000 copies sold
sample translation available
prizes Silver Kiss 2005, Children's and Youth Jury Prize 2006
foreign rights sold to Le Rouergue (France) and Patmos
his parents are on holiday for a week in Barcelona, Joppe and a
few of his fellow nursing students organise a mass demonstration
against the war in Iraq. In the meantime, he tries to win the
heart of the intriguing but independent Alya, but his sick great
grandfather Tist throws a spanner in the works. While Joppe
chants anti-war slogans, Tist relives his own war.
Sterck accurately describes the anxieties of Tist, which started
one night during the war when he was supposed to keep vigil by
his little sister’s deathbed but fell asleep instead. The
disintegration of his family that followed drives him into the
war instead of away from it. Tist’s wartime trauma results in a
lasting fear of abandonment and he decides that it makes no
sense to love people when you know you must ultimately give them
up. Only after the arrival of Sien and her daughter Mie does the
surly war veteran begin to change, although his stubbornness
will plague him for the rest of his life. A growing awareness
that his days are coming to an end makes Tist gentler, more
approachable, and ready to reveal old secrets.
in a compelling, gripping and enchanting poetic language, slowly
releasing its compact dramatic tension, engulfed in secrets.’ –
Dutch Library Service
gripping and plausible book, which excites, moves and compels
the reader to think in a manner that goes beyond Marita De
Sterck’s earlier novels.’ – De Morgen
plodded through the muddy trenches. Men barked orders at him in
a language he didn’t understand. Boys dropped in the mud on all
sides because they had no idea what they were being ordered to
four boys fell on top of Tist. He felt the bullets driving into
their bodies. He knew that it was their flesh that saved his
life. Hours later, when he tried to push them off, he saw that
two of them were still alive, one with less than half a face,
the other with a bullet in his thigh.
a request for Tist. Tist said yes twice. He helped one to die
and the other to continue living.”
de Sterck’s most recent book Bad Blood (Kwaad Bloed,
Querido,159 pp., age 12+, Book Lion 2007, Silver Kiss
2007) presents a unique sketch of a Flemish boarding school
immediately after World War II and offers the reader a finely
written description of what it was like to grow into womanhood
in grandmother’s day.
VROEM, VROEM... BOEM/ZOOM, ZOOM... BOOM
Text: Marita de Sterck.
Illustrations: Ingrid Godon.
Maya is always bumping into things on her trike, accidentally
on purpose. She’s a hazard in the home from the crack of dawn
until late at night. Will her crashes and falls never end? Her
parents are at their wit’s end... (2 years and up)
A recognisable picture book for reading out loud. Perfect for
energetic pre-schoolers and for adults who share their lives
with a hectic, nice-and-wild child... or remember being one
A moving story of first love.
Jutta stumbled when she saw Anton for the first time.
She tripped over her own two feet.
As if her legs suddenly belonged to someone else.
And Anton falls under Jutta’s spell. He can’t get his mind
off that strange, awkward girl.
"Be careful," people whisper. "She’s trouble."
But from that very first day there’s no turning back. Not for
Jutta. And not for Anton.
They are swept up by a love that leaves them no choice.
A fully-fledged passion. A difficult love in which the past
keeps on popping up, in which all escape routes are cut off, in
which there are more questions than answers.
Can you love without getting wounded by the splinters?
Is love ever the same, for him, for her?
If you’ve tasted it once, can you ever do without? (13 years and
WILD VLEES/SCAR TISSUE (2000)
Max comes home from a hiking trip to hear that his
grandfather has had a fatal accident. The news is too much for
him. After all, he has more or less grown up with his
grandfather. In search of someone to blame, he begins
investigating every detail of his grandfather’s accident, no
matter how grisly. This is his way of coping with his sorrow,
his way of exorcising his grief. Max scarcely notices how
hurtful his aspersions are for all those involved: the young
truck driver, the police officers, the hospital staff and the
undertaker. Max knows no mercy, not even for his parents or
Linde, his girlfriend.
It’s only when all the stories have
been told and the wounds have healed over, that Max is able to
finally let go and get on with his life.
The sudden death of someone you’re close to can upset
your whole life. Marita de Sterck describes this experience. The
story is about coming to terms with loss, but also about the
best cure: love. Like Splinters, this challenging book
raises pressing questions about love and death.
(15 years and up)
You can contact Marita de Sterck for a workshop
on the following subject:
Listening to initiation stories; how ritual storytelling can
promote change and renewal in individuals and groups.
Non-western cultural groups celebrate the growth of their
children with initiation rituals. Stories are the central part
of these rituals. These groups believe stories can promote
What kind of stories do they select for their rituals? How do
these stories work? What are their functions? In which way do
they promote individual and social change and renewal? What are
the differences between their stories and our literature for
children and young adults? What can we learn from them? How do
these stories generate intercultural change and renewal?
With the help of overhead projection we will travel around the
world, look at rituals and listen to stories. It will be a
journey with confronting anthropological, psychoanalytical and
literary components, but above all: a look in the mirror