Magic Candies

Author and illustrator: Baek, Heena

Translation rights represented: European languages

2020 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award laureate


Selected for 2018 IBBY Honour List


2017 Sejong Books by Korean Ministry of Culture


2017 Book of the Year of YES24 Bookstore


2018 MOE Grand Prize (Japan) 6th ranked


2018 Japanese Picture Book Award

Rights sold: Japanese, Simplified Chinese, Complex Chinese, English (North America), Russian, Swedish, Spanish and Catalan


An imaginative story about empathy and love from the 2020 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award winner.


Dong-Dong is a shy boy. He can’t find the courage to ask “Will you play with me?” to a new friend, even though he really wants to. So he tells himself that he is okay playing alone. One day, Dong-Dong gets hold of a bag of magic sweets. Each time he puts a sweet into his mouth he is able to hear the deepest thoughts and feelings of other people, animals and even things. He can hear the sofa’s voice, understand his dog, catch up with his late grandma, and listen to what is in his demanding father’s heart. Slowly, as others open up to him, he will find the confidence to open up to a new friend.


Baek, Heena is a South Korean author of picture books, an illustrator and animator. She writes picture books with characters that have distinct personalities and with charming storytelling based on various illustration production experiences. Baek Heena studied educational technology at Ewha Womans University and animation at the California Institute of the Arts. Her works have been translated into several languages and her book Cloud Bread made into an animated TV programme and musical. She was selected for the Bologna Illustrator’s Exhibition 2005 for Cloud Bread, and was selected for the 3rd Changwon Children’s Literature Award and the 53rd Korea Book Award for The Bath Fairy. She was also selected for the IBBY Honour List 2018 for Magic Candies. In 2020 she won the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award.