Author and illustrator Ġorġ Mallia has just published a book of fantasy for children with the present situation in our country as its context. That is, with children staying home because schools are closed. The book is being given away free in pdf format, as a gift from the author to all Maltese and Gozitan children.
About the book L-Avventura Msaħħra ta’ Melanie u Karl (The Enchanted Adventure of Melanie and Karl), Ġorġ Mallia had this to say to Newsbook: “We are living through an unprecedented situation. All children are home, with parents racking their brains to come up with many ways of keeping them occupied. I am hoping that one of these ways is reading, and what can be better than a book that begins, in actual fact, with children stranded at home because of the Covid-19 pandemic?”
The book develops into a fantasy in which the protagonists, Melanie and Karl, go through an enchanted book and find themselves in a world in which greed had destroyed everything. They also find out that there is something inside them that can help them fight to save the destroyed environment of that world.
“The book had to be an exciting adventure, because children should only read what they like,” said Ġorġ Mallia. “I am hoping that this book, that they can download and then read on their computers, tablets or smartphones, will continue to encourage them to read. That is an excellent way of escaping for a while from being among the four walls of their home to where their imagination can wander.”
He added that he was hoping that other authors would be inspired by this initiative and reflect in their writings the situation around us at the moment.
Professor Mallia, who is also the head of the University of Malta’s Department of Media and Communications, is best known as a children’s writer and as a cartoonist. In fact, the book also contains thirteen pictures drawn in a cartoony style.
The book can be downloaded for free from http://www.gorgmallia.com/avventura.html.