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on November 25, 2004
This book was the reason I started reading at 5! After getting too impatient waiting for my father to read one chapter at a time every evening, I was determined to read it myself. And so I did, along with its two sequels. This is a beautiful, majestic collection that will definitely entice children into reading it. It teaches the true value of friendship, which is something that should be understood at an early age. As compared to the present day's Harry Potter, this book is full of fantastic reality, but without darkness and cruelty. It should definitely be published in English for mass distribution!
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on February 23, 2000
I am a Chinese.This book was translated in Chinese in 1984 and never republished again.This book influenced me greatly.Every time I read it,I am excited and thankful to Astrid Lindgren.Few people know it is such a good book.It is the best book of all auther's works.Better than Pippi,although I also love Pippi.I want more people read it and love it.If you can write Chinese and love this book,I want to be your friend because my English is poor.(email:camelbird@990.net)
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on July 16, 1999
I consider the publication of this book and its sequels a pinnacle moment in children's literature. Perhaps I sound overly dramatic, but this book is the ultimate in great writing. Karlsson On The Roof is written by Astrid Lindgren, the world's premier writer of children's literature with higher book sales than Dr. Seuss. It is certainly a shame that so many of her books are not published in English when she flourishes elsewhere. Karlsson On the Roof is by far the best book by this terrificly prolific author. It is a wonderfully whimsical feast of a book and it continues to sweep me away into greater heights of my imagination.
PS - I have sent a protest letter to Viking Penguin stating the reasons why this classic should be republished in English. Let's hope this gets somewhere!
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on June 22, 2010
This book, beloved since childhood in Ukraine, has turned out to be a total disappointment. This English translation which I bought to read to my son is really dull and outdated. People don't speak this way in real life (e.g. "Oh, lordy, lordy!" was my "favorite" phrase). And why in the world was Bok (in the next, same low quality book "Karlson flies again") renamed Mrs. Crawley? The edition itself is very uninviting - scarce black and white drawings and thick grey supermarket book style pages. In a nutshell - a disappointment, but there are no other choices for this otherwise wonderful children's book.
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on January 25, 2012
This book will never be very popular in the US unless some brilliant translator breathes a new life into it. If you are from the former Soviet Union you will never be satisfied with this translation and your English-speaking children will never understand what's so special about this book. For those who do not know - this book by Astrid Lindgren has been wildly popular and still is in the former Soviet Union's territories. Mostly due to the excellent work of the translator, they say Astrid Lindgren herself thought that the "Russian" Karlson came out a "better one" than her own.
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on December 26, 2014
I give this book "one star" only because of the most Horrible translation that killed this book.

I read this book in Russian when I was a child and absolutely loved it! It's still one of my favorite books and my kids (now 18.
and 13) also loved it, and were enchanted by the Russian translation even they couldn't read it by themselves. They were very excited to have finally! copy in English but barely could read few pages. The dynamic of the book was different, the text is plain boring.
And the names of the characters were changed.
If Russian translator could keep the original names why English translator couldn't?
( Svante Svanteson is a main character, Bettan is the name of his sister, Bosse is the name of his brother, his friends are Gunilla and Krister and the nanny's name is Fröken Hildur Bock)?

I wouldn't spent a penny on this book, the earlier translations were better, I would recommend "Karlson flies again" translation by Patricia Crampton, even the names are changed, but the language is so much better!
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon January 24, 2016
This is an absolutely wonderful children's story book by the same woman who brought us Pippi Longstocking. Although relatively unknown in the United States, this story has had what could be considered a following in Russia since the 1970s. I purchased this just to add to my collection of Swedish automobiles. The title is based on a Saab driver who was known for flipping his cars over.

These English translations differ betweenthe hardback & paperback. B character has different names depending on which book you read, and the child was not even referred to by name in different translations. This story however is still rather intact, and I'm sure any younger child who can be torn away from their iPhone long enough will love these stories.
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on May 11, 1999
If there is one book your child consented to read, make it this one. Imagination and kindness that will not bore your child to death either. That's a shame that you probably will not be able to find this book for a price lower than $50. I know, I tried. This book is the example of the weakness that the US publishing system seems to have. It doesn't pay too much attention to what other countries consider to be undying classic. The other clear example is Jules Verne masterpiece "Captain Grant's children." I'm not sure it was ever even translated to English, despite the fact that there was an American movie made based on this book. What a shame. I hope at some point there will be a change for the better.
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on October 26, 2015
Unfortunately my boys (6 & 8) don't like it.
They loved Children of Noisy Village and Pippi Longstocking so I thought it would be a good idea to get this book as well.
Well, this book is not as much fun. First of all, the fonts are very small, much smaller than regular books. And the most important thing, the plot really isn't all that interesting. Maybe it gets better. My boys lost patience pretty quickly (it's actually the first book ever that they got up and went away as I was reading it to them...), so we didn't get past the first 2-3 chapters.
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on September 23, 2005
All three Karlsson books by Astrid Lindgren are children classics, "cult" books. I can't belive you can only find them in English from used book sellers for $72, $249 and other ridiculous prices.

I wonder if those children books publishers ever look at out-of-print books prices. Don't those prices give you some clue on what is in demand?

I mean, really, guys - you have lots of immigrants from other countries, especially from China, Japan, Russia, Poland, other European countries, who love and miss that book and wish to buy them now for their own kids. Just estimate, how big is this market, please.

I am sure people who were born here would appreciate them too if they were more accessible.

You just can't go wrong with publishing the world's most brilliant, famous children classics. Please reprint three Karlson books. And, maybe, you can get a new, better translation too, because the existing one is rather dull, as people who read it told me.

Karlsson books/character in my opinion are/is main books/character you recognize Astrid Lidgren by. All others like Pippi longstocking, Ronie, Emil, etc. come after it. While you can find those other books easily in stores and on Amazon, the best one sadly became some kind of rarity.

These books are in the same league with Winni the Pooh, Mary Poppins, Wizard of Oz. They are must have books.

I really wanted to buy them for my nieces as a gift, but I guess I should do with Moomin-troll series instead - another beautiful children world classics underestimated in USA. I'd better buy them soon, or they might became a rarity with astronomical prices.
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