Happy Times in Finland (1941)


"May You Better Understand the Gifts of America Through Reading
About the Many Struggles of Finland!":
First Edition of
Happy Times in Finland, 1941,
Inscribed by the Author, Libushka Bartusek

Bartusek, Libushka. Chappell, Warren, illustrator. Happy Times in Finland. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1941.

Octavo. Hardcover. 1st Edition

First edition of this collection of stories about childhood in Finland, published two years after the Soviets invaded Finland during World War II, with black-and-white and color illustrations by American artist Walter Chappell, inscribed on the half title: "1941. May you better understand the gifts of America through reading about the many struggles of Finland! Sincerely, Libushka Bartusek." Written by during the early days of World War II, in the first year of the Winter War, this children's book concentrates on a Finnish-American boy's first visit to Finland and the diverse customs of the Finns he meets there, from using a sauna to riding a reindeer-pulled sled. Bartusek, a Czech-American children's author, wrote this work to follow an earlier children's work about Czechoslovakia (Happy Times in Czechoslovakia). Bartusek likely felt great empathy for the Finnish people and the threats they were facing in Europe, as Czechoslovakia was encountering similar threats from Hitler. This book aims to show Finland as a modern, thriving nation with a population committed to progress. Early price sticker affixed to rear pastedown. Book extremely good, with single spot of soiling to interior, mild toning, and a bit of wear to extremities. Dust jacket very good, with light sunning, slightest soiling, and wear to extremities including a spinechild just touching author's name. A desirable inscribed copy of a scarce work.