This new bedtime story combines two phenomena of Czech work for children. The artistic expression of Josef Lada and the classic fairy-tale character, Honza, which belongs to the best and most interesting of our fairy-tale tradition, and the ambiguity of its character directly calls for a new elaboration.
Honza grazes sheep of a rich farmer on a hillside outside a village and dreams of the world behind the big hill. In the spring, a black lamb is born. It is the most curious and most lively of all the sheep in the herd. It would play all day long and it wouldn't go anywhere without Honza. But the black lamb is a thorn in the farmer's eye, because it is said to be unlucky. The farmer wants to get rid of it as soon as possible. The pretext will soon be found, hence Honza and the lamb have no choice but to set out on a journey. Honza and the black lamb form the central couple of the series, and together they experience various fairy-tale adventures, whether with a hastrman (waterman), a witch, on a pilgrimage or in a mysterious castle. Neither Honza nor the Lamb are first-rate heroes, sometimes we can even doubt the reasonableness and usefulness of some of their actions. However, thanks to their sharpness, playfulness, ingenuity and courage, they can always cope. Together they form an extremely likable and original couple. The stories are set in Hrusice with its unique atmosphere and picturesque surroundings.
I could hardly believe that a quality new bedtime story could be created nowadays. Pleasant intro and ending melodies, Lada paintings - picturesque valleys, nice stories and, of course, the excellent Josef Dvorak. This bedtime story reminds me of old times and I definitely recommend it to all.