The White Ravens Database

Presented by   Internationale Jugendbibliothek / International Youth Library

Spanish / Spain

Isla Calamidad

(Calamity Island)

Pallarés, Ámina (text)
Spellucci, Simone (illus.)
Sevilla [et al.]: Tres Tigres Tristes, 2021. – [36] p.
ISBN 978-84-121126-0-3

Island  | Nature  | Force of nature  | Volcano  | Hurricane  | Picture book

Reading age: 7+

White Ravens issue: 2022


The island of Dominica inspired the Italian illustrator Simone Spellucci to create this picture book. At times the narrative resembles a mythical tale from long ago, even while it is also quite modern when alluding indirectly to current themes, such as man-made climate change. Dominica, an island in the Lesser Antilles, is of volcanic origin and blessed with rich, lush vegetation. But it is highly exposed to the forces of nature – wind, ocean, and hurricanes – which bear the names Vanté, Lanmé and Hura in the Creole language spoken there. The book depicts the destructive, but equally creative forces that constantly allow nature to bring forth something new. Spellucci composed powerful illustrations with coloured pencils and felt pens, which he then re-worked on a computer. As in silk screen printing, he employs only a few colours, which partially overlap each other. This striking graphic style fits well with the exuberant nature he is portraying and radiates considerable freshness and liveliness. [JW]