This is one of the Astrid Lindgren books that I had to buy because it wasn’t available anywhere. Luckily, I found a copy online for very cheap — this is readily available at reasonable prices. Lucky me! Lucky everyone! It’s a delight!
Simon Small Moves In (Nils Karlsson Pyssling Flyttar In, 1956, translated by Marianne Turner) is the story of Nicky (Bertil in the original Swedish) and the tiny Simon Small (or Nils Karlsson Pyssling) told through a fantastic story and Ilon Wikland’s usual wonderful pictures.
This is a thoroughly engaging book, full of whimsy and fun with a hint of real life thrown in: Nicky is sad at the beginning of the story when he thinks about his sister Katy who “was gone now, and Nicky was all alone.” Through the rest of the book, it becomes apparent that Katy is gone permanently.
When Simon Small shows up, Nicky gains a friend and the satisfaction of finding solutions to Simon’s problems. Nicky helps Simon procure firewood, food, and furniture (from Katy’s dollhouse). The two become friends as they fix up Simon’s place. Nicky is happy and laughing again and so is Simon.
“How long have you lived here?” asked Nicky.
“Oh, just a few days,” said Simon Small. “I got the place from a town mouse. She went to live with her sister in the country and I helped her to move her furniture out. It’s much the best way, to have your own furniture.”