Tom's father is afraid of animals. Butterflies, snails, squirrels--they alarm him so much, he won't even come out of the house. Tom decides to take drastic measures and heads to the pet shop. First he trains a polar bear and sneaks it into the house. Then he smuggles in a tiger, a squid, a tortoise, a snake, two peacocks, three hippos and a small flock of flamingos. His father doesn't seem to notice at first but learns that his son's creativity and courage can help him conquer his fears.
Tjibbe Veldkamp (b. 1962) was working in psychology when he read an English children's book and discovered that he wanted to be a writer. He took part in a story competition and won. Veldkamp is now known as a champion of the picture book, but he has also written a number of original books for older children. Tjibbe won a 'Flying Colors' Best Books for Children award and received the Children's Bookshop prize.Mr. Veldkamp often writes about children who are having a bad time and who have to solve their problems themselves. He likes to give children the feeling that they can do so and wants for his books to give them hope. Philip Hopman (b. 1961) graduated from the Rietveld Art Academy in 1985. Since 1988, he has devoted his talents to illustrating picture books. So far he has illustrated over 120 children's books from Dutch and foreign authors. Philip Hopman and Tjibbe Veldkamp have collaborated on many children's picture books. Among them are "The School Trip" (also Lemniscaat) and "22 Orphans," published in the U.S. by Kane/Miller and in seven other countries as well. "22 Orphans" was awarded a Silver Brush (an prestigious Dutch award).
"A small boy's imaginative play tames his father's fears. . . . Sublime." --Kirkus (starred review)