Croatian schoolchildren learning how to deal with COVID-19 from “Hannah, Our Hero”

October 14, 2020 - 18:34

TEHRAN – Schools in the northern Croatian town of Krapina have selected Iranian writer Ali-Asghar Seidabadi’s book named “Hannah, Our Hero” to teach their students how to take care of themselves during the coronavirus pandemic. 

Copies of the book have been distributed by the Embassy of Iran in Croatia, the Persian service of IRNA reported on Wednesday.

Seidabadi authored the book when the home quarantine began in Iran with the Iranian New Year holiday on March 20.

Illustrated by Seidabadi’s daughter, Ghazaleh, the book was translated into English, Italian, Croatian, French, German and several other languages. Bijan Alai is the translator of the Croatian version.

In a preface to the book, Seidabadi refers to some books written on coronavirus – COVID-19 by Chinese and American authors during the coronavirus pandemic and added, “They were useful books, but for me, the social aspects of the event and its effect on our lives and tolerating the situation were more important than how to tackle and get rid of the virus.”

“Hannah, Our Hero” is about several children including Hannah that go to visit their uncle, Bahman, who doesn’t know that he is infected with COVID-19. All children are infected, but Hannah escapes uninfected due to her care about the tips for dealing with coronavirus.

All translations of the book are available for download on Seidabadi’s official website  

The book was translated into Italian by Shabnam Kasrai. Farshid Sadatsharifi and Sara Louise Anderson are the translators of the English and French versions. The German and French versions have been rendered by Zahra Nurbakhsh.

Seidabadi was nominated for the IBBY-iRead Outstanding Reading Promoter Award in 2019. The biennial award has been co-established by the iRead Foundation in China and the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY) in Switzerland to honor worldwide the reading promoters who have made an outstanding contribution to children’s reading.

At the same time, he also received a nomination for the 2019 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, a prestigious Swedish honor to promote children’s and youths’ literature in the world. However, he did not win any of the honors.

His is the writer of numerous books, including “Whom Did Aunt Suska Marry?”, “The Wedding of Bijan and Manijeh” and “Rainbow in My Pocket”.

Photo: Front cover of the Croatian translation of “Hannah, Our Hero”.