Dutch writer Tonke Dragt’s The Letter for the King has received rave reviews following its publication in an English translation by Laura Watkinson. Set in the Middle Ages, the book was described in The Guardian as “a grown-up version of the 'classic' children's books” such as Swallows and Amazons, Black Beauty and The Hobbit. The plot was “extremely gripping”, the critic said, “but the writing also delivers lovely detail and evocative description.” Meanwhile, The Irish Times critic described the book as “a fast-moving, wonderful old-style adventure”.
Originally titled De brief voor de koning, this Dutch children’s classic was first published in 1962. The author was born in Batavia in 1930 and was interned by the Japanese during the Second World War. She apparently began writing stories inspired by Jules Verne while living in the prisoner-of-war camp. After settling in the Netherlands with her family, she studied art and published her first children’s book in 1961.