Das Doppelte Lottchen, in English Lottie and Lisa, is the original story by Erich Kästner on which the well-known film The Parent Trap is based. I read this book after seeing a production of Emil and the Detectives at the National Theatre over Christmas and deciding to seek out more of Erich Kästner's fantastic literature. Even though I loved the book Emil and the Detectives as a child, I was very pleasantly surprised by just how much I enjoyed Das Doppelte Lottchen. Whilst obviously a children's book, the story was so comfortably written that I couldn't put it down. In fact, as I was reading it in the original German, it was a great feeling to whiz through the book desperate to continue with the story. Kästner's writing is incredibly witty and the portrayal of the two girls, who look so alike and yet are so different in their tastes and habits and personalities, is exceptional. I really felt that I got to know Lotte and Luise and was desperately hoping that they would be reunited with each other and their parents. Of course, there were a couple of points which made the idea of twins swapping unnoticed just a bit questionable, not least because one had grown up in Munich and one in Vienna – I'm not sure they would have been able to disguise their accents! But this point aside, the story itself is a heart-warming tale of the strength and determination of children and the way in which actually, sometimes, they do know better than their parents. I had no idea until recently that Erich Kästner had written this book and that's where The Parent Trap came from, and that made me realise how important it is to read and be aware of literature from around the world, both as children and as adults. Emil and the Detectives ended up on my shelf because my mum had had it when she was a child, but I am not sure I know anyone else who has read it other than my sister, and my friends in Germany. However, I firmly believe that this story and all of Erich Kästner's books should be more readily available and more widely promoted in England. It is essential that we embrace these fantastic contributions from other cultures and that we all work together to ensure that children all over the world can read stories such as this beautiful account of two sisters who just want to be together and reunite their parents so they can be a family once more.