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Matti Lives in Finland facts for kids

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Matti Lives in Finland
Author Astrid Lindgren
Original title Matti bor i Finland
Illustrator Anna Riwkin-Brick
Country Sweden
Language Swedish
Series Children's Everywhere
Genre Children's literature
Publisher Rabén & Sjögren
Publication date
Published in English
Preceded by Gennet lives in Ethiopia 
Followed by Salima Lives in Kashmir 

Matti Lives in Finland (Original title: Matti bor i Finland) is a book by Swedish writer Astrid Lindgren, with the photos by Anna Riwkin-Brick. In 1968 the book was published at Rabén & Sjögren.


Matti lives on a farm in Finland. He has one friend named Merja. Merja has a nice grandfather, who Matti also likes to visit. In addition, Merja owns a dog named Kari, which Matti loves. Matti would also like to have his own animal, but he does not get it.

One day when Merja falls into the sea and threatens to drown, Matti is able to save her. The two promise each other not to tell anybody about this.

Some time later, Matti's father comes to the farm with a small calf, which he gives to Matti. From then on, Matti takes care of the calf every day and visits it constantly.

However, one day, Merja's grandfather buys the calf from Matti's father. He wants to slaughter the calf for his birthday dinner. Matti is heartbroken, but Merja's grandfather does not make compromises, and when Matti's father wants to buy the calf, he refuses.

Merja sees how desperate and sad Matti is and decides to talk to her grandfather. She asks how much she is worth to him. Her grandfather says she is worth all the money in the world. Then she says that her grandfather should give the calf to Matti, because Matti had saved her and she would no longer exist without Matti. This is the moment when the grandfather realizes how important the calf is to Matti and gives it to him. After this everyone celebrates grandfather's birthday.


Matti Lives in Finland was first published in 1968. It was released as Matti bor i Finland by the Swedish publisher Rabén & Sjögren. It is the thirteenth of a total of 15 children's books from the Children's Everywhere series. It is the last book by Anna Riwkin-Brick and Astrid Lindgren. Now, the book is out of print and can only be purchased second-hand.

The book has been translated into many other languages, such as German, English and Hebrew. In Israel, the series Children's Everywhere, which also includes Matti Lives in Finland, was a great success. The latter was also based on the translations of the poet Leah Goldberg.


  • Matti bor i Finland, Rabén & Sjögren, 1968, Swedish Edition
  • Matti Lives in Finland, The Macmillan Company, 1968, US-american Edition
  • Matti Lives in Finland, Methuen, 1969, British Edition
  • Matti bor i Finland, Gyldendal, 1968, Norwegian Edition
  • Matti bor i Finland, Høst & søn, 1968, Danish Edition
  • Matti aus Finnland, Oetinger Verlag, 1969, German Edition
  • Matti ja kesä, Otava, 1969, Finish Edition
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