Adventures of a cricket, 70 years after

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(VoVoworld) – Over the past 70 years, “Adventures of a Cricket", written by To Hoai, has become a close friend of many generations of Vietnamese children. Every sentence, every paragraph, and every image in the work is filled with love, praising peaceful ideals and noble friendship. To mark the 70 anniversary of this literature work, let’s listen to opinions of some people talking about the beloved children's tale through a report by Lan Anh.

(VoVoworld) – Over the past 70 years, “Adventures of a Cricket", written by To Hoai, has become a close friend of many generations of Vietnamese children. Every sentence, every paragraph, and every image in the work is filled with love, praising peaceful ideals and noble friendship. To mark the 70 anniversary of this literature work, let’s listen to opinions of some people talking about the beloved children's tale through a report by Lan Anh.


At the age of 70, Cricket is not old or tired but he remains young as a friend of all Vietnamese children forever. He is brimming with thirst to explore new worlds and face new challenges. A cricket was initiated by To Hoai and adventured around the world to look for good things for human being not only in Vietnam but also in many other countries. The cricket has made reputation for To Hoai. Critic Pham Xuan Nguyen made the sincere comments for To Hoai’s “Adventures of a Cricket" at a ceremony to celebrate 70 years since the book's release. Writer To Hoai , who is now 93, said its attraction is the vitality of time and crossing the Vietnamese border to others around the globe. Writer To Hoai said ‘I remember the Adventures of a cricket was first published in Russia and translated by a Russian writer. Then other Eastern European countries have also translated it. It’s a great honor for me as a writer.

Adventures of a cricket, 70 years after - ảnh 1
A man and his son look in an exhibit marking Adventures of a Cricket’s 70th birthday. Photo by Minh Thu/VNNews

The book is particularly attractive to foreign readers both adults and children, both the ordinary, writers, poets, and researchers, according to writer Bang Viet. Viet commented ‘When the book is translated into foreign languages including Russian, German, English, and French, the host countries’ readers find surprised about a story full of humanity. According to many foreign writers, the book becomes immortal as it’s humanity but not a specific character of any nation.

The book is about the adventures of a cricket who leaves his nest and travels to different places. He grows up and learns by overcoming difficult situations with the help of many different people and animals. Despite numerous difficulties on the road, the cricket with his friends is determined to fight against injustice in life. The whole literature work is an innovative invention of the author through a process of meticulous observation and careful study of cricket life. To Hoai has used the stories of animals to debate raison d’etre of human being and convey a message for young people - to walk new paths, try new works, and build a happy life, rather than staying in a sullen society. Writer Bang Viet admitted he has been strongly influenced by this work ‘Since I was a child, I read the Adventures of a cricket. The book attracted all people of my generation because of its attractive plot, the personality of the main character Cricket, and its ideals which are the ideals of the generation of writer To Hoai. Therefore, when we joined the army in the country’s resistance wars, our generation had been much influenced by this work.

Over 70 years, the book’s success has been attributed to contributions by painters. With familiar scenes and popularly-known characters being a cricket, locust, or ants, each painter draws illustrative paintings by their own feel. Younger painter Ta Huy Long shared his thought: ‘To Hoai’s tale has changed me a lot. It forces me to make adventure and look for new ways of expression. Finally, I decided to use water-colors to depict the world and the soul of characters.’

Adventures of a cricket, 70 years after - ảnh 2
At the age of 90, writer To Hoai is still healthy and optimistic. (Photo: http://vietnam.vnanet.vn)

To Hoai is a great, old tree” of the Vietnamese literary circle and children literature. Born in 1920, his real name is Nguyen Sen while his pen-name “To Hoai” originates from the first names of two famous places in Hanoi - the To Lich River and Hoai Duc District. He began the literature career by writing romantic poems but then found that it didn’t match him. His first short story was ‘Water rises’ written in realistic style and attracted public attention. In 1941, To Hoai wrote “Con de men” (A cricket), the first version of the story, for Tan Dan Publishing House, and then in 1942 he continued to write and released the work together as “De men phieu luu ky”, the version celebrated today.

Lan Anh

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