Children’s Books from Italy

Promoting an international understanding through good books for children and young people was the idea of an extraordinary woman: Jella Lepman. In 1946 Germany, she thought that children’s books were the place to start. More than fifty years later, Italy is once again the host country for the International Congress of IBBY, the organisation born thanks to Lepman’s determination, because she wanted that all over the world there were presidia to guarantee the circulation of good books.

Today we know that the possibility of offering a wide choice of high-quality children’s books is often strictly connected to the work of independent publishers. In Italy, the publishing industry is characterised by a remarkable liveliness of independent publishers, and those for children and young people are perhaps the most dynamic and innovative group. From a quick glance at the lists of winners and finalists of the Italian literary prizes dedicated to children, we can see that well over half of the award-winning books are published by independent publishers, who have made the quality of their publications a distinctive feature and a major strength. 

With this catalogue, ADEI (Associazione degli Editori indipendenti italiani – Association of Italian Independent Publishers) is proud to present a selection of the best new titles for children from Italian independent publishers. We hope that this will help to introduce the publishing houses to new international publishers and create new connections. 

This year, the spotlight will be on Italy Guest of Honour at Frankfurt Book Fair. New opportunities will be made available to support the translation of Italian books. You may find some more information in this page. For children’s publishers, Bologna Children’s Book Fair is still the place where everything starts and this year ADEI promoted a meeting with Italian institutions to discuss the best practices to promote the international circulation of children’s books. 

We hope this is just a first step towards new connections and new opportunities for the ultimate goal we all share, to bring good books across borders, to children all over the world. 

Andrea Palombi, President
Della Passarelli, Vice Presidente