20th Bücherpiraten Festival in Lübeck



A little over a year ago, I took you to the Lübeck Children’s Literature House at Fleischhauerstraße 71 for the first time for Lübeck ZWISCHENZEILEN and introduced you to the house, its many activities, and especially the Youth Book Days. Here you can read the blogpost again. This time I will tell you about the Book Pirates Festival which is being held for the twentieth time this year. Anneke Brors of the association Bücherpiraten e.V. and Léa Oltmanns, one of the three volunteers who organise the festival, invited me for coffee and a little trip into the world of children’s literature. Follow me and be inspired to visit.

BBF 2023 Plakat 1

Léa and her co-organisers Linnea Müller and Mara Ostertag are former members of the book pirates, Léa tells me. This is the third time that she has been involved as an organiser. These three literature enthusiasts dedicate many weeks and months of their free time to the preparation of the festival. They start preparing in the winter months of the previous year.

How should I imagine it? How do the girls decide which books to feature in the festival? Léa gives me information. Her eyes are sparkling and her face is aglow with passion for the event and the subject of reading. Pupils from Lübeck make a significant contribution to the programme. This year, for the first time, 600 children and young people took part and told the organizing team which books they like to read. A record number that the festival organisers are justifiably proud of. “This already is a positive sign that the work of the Children’s Literature House in Lübeck and that of the book pirates are appreciated. The feedback gives us a pretty clear picture of which authors are currently capturing the hearts and minds of young readers,” says Léa.

Robber’s daughters and sons

The author Alice Pantermüller therefore absolutely had to be invited to the 20th Book Pirates Festival. 20 volumes of the popular “Mein Lotto Leben” series have already been published since 2012. In Lübeck, Alice Pantermüller reads from“Außergewöhnliche Fälle der Florentine Brix“.

A benefit reading on Friday evening at 7 p.m. is dedicated to the world-famous “Ronia Robber’s daughter.” The actress Maria Ehrich will read. The scenes that take place in Mattiswald are illustrated live on stage.

“This summer,” he said, looking at Ronia. “Yes, I shall carry this summer with me till the end of my life – I know that.”

Astrid Lindgren, Ronia the Robber’s Daughter

Another guest of the Festival will be the Finnish children’s author Heidi Viherjuuri . She will be reading from her book “Hilja”, who is incredibly adventurous and curious and loves to get into mischief and sometimes push the boundaries. Hilja has two great grannies, namely Raincoat Granny and Currant Granny. Together with Hilja, for example, they go mushroom and berry picking in the Finnish nature and Hilja while talking about the “Everyman’s right“Hilja thinks there must be something wrong with this concept. “Why isn’t it the right of all children, grannies, people and animals?” Hilja wants to know and writes a letter to the president, who even answers her and announces a change in the law.

Other books, that will be presented at the Festival for example are “Die Monster Schule” and “Der Geräuschehändler”. I can’t possibly introduce you to all the books here, although all the titles would deserve it. Léa, Mara and Linnea have put together such a lively program.

hallo hier ist hilja gebundene ausgabe heidi viherjuuri

The festival artist Lena Winkel

In addition to readings, it also offers a range of activities that invite visitors to get creative and participate. Among them, a sound workshop aimed at everyone from 8 years old. (Even me, who has always loved guessing what tools and tricks are used to create sound effects in films and audiobooks).

There will also be a zine workshop with illustrator Lena Winkel, where children can create and draw their own characters. Lena Winkel is this year’s festival artist, who also did the illustrations for the book”Haben wir auch nichts vergessen?” With a presentation of this book the artist opens the Festival on Wednesday, September 13 .

Incidentally, on its opening day, as a As a “house full of stories to wander around and marvel at“, the House of Children’s Literature invites visitors to explore every nook and cranny, solve puzzles, do handicrafts and marvel from 3pm to 6pm with free admission. There will also be an exhibition of works by the festival artist, which you can already see on the first floor. In doing so, you’ll quickly see what Lena Winkel loves to draw. I won’t tell you here.



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written by:

Barbara Schwartz