I bought this at the suggestion of a German friend of mine who read this growing up. I am currently teaching myself German, and she thought this would be a great beginner's book to read - she was right. Although I struggled with some words and phrases (most likely due to my lack of language skills), I thoroughly enjoyed the story and would recommend it to anyone with an upper level basic grasp of German that wants to sink their teeth into something other than learning by rote.
I wonder why Emil has had such a long life. Or perhaps he hasn't. Do children still read the story now? Rereading it after about seventy years it now seems pretty tame. The adventure does have the merit of being plausible - even if the reasons for Emil not going straight to the police are a bit thin. The characterisation of the children is sympathetic - the plot is extremely simple- and the book is mercifully short. Is it possible that it had any influence on the film 'Hue and Cry' with Alistair Sim in which a horde of children bring the villain to justice - if I remember aright.