In all the years that Elinora Gassbeek has been matron of the Little Tulip Orphanage, not once have the Rules for Baby Abandonment been broken. Until the autumn of 1880, when five babies are left in outrageous circumstances; one in a tin toolbox, one in a coal bucket, one in a picnic hamper, one in a wheat sack, and finally, one in a coffin-shaped basket. Those babies were Lotta, Egg, Fenna, Sem, and Milou. And although their cruel matron might think they're "unadoptable," they know their individuality is what makes them special — and so determined to stay together.
When a most sinister gentleman appears and threatens to tear them apart, the gang make a daring escape across the frozen canals of Amsterdam. But is their real home — and their real family — already closer than they realize? Neil Gaiman meets Hans Christian Andersen in this delicious fairy tale full of mysterious spirits, daring escapes, and a beautiful message about the power of found families.
"Each [child] longs to be adopted, but would-be parents reject them when they see the kids’ atypical attributes.... That is, until sinister Meneer Rotman sees their remarkable gifts — but Milou’s special sense warns her that Rotman’s evil. Indeed: They discover he intends to buy them as slave labor to crew his ship.... While the vivid, Dickensian setting — grim orphanage, icy mists, and shadowy dockyards — and quaint clockwork creations and life-size puppets spin a web of Gothic creepiness, the bonds among this found family of lively orphans add plenty of warmth and light." — Kirkus Reviews
|Recommended Age||9 - 13|
|Publication Date||Jul 21, 2020|
|Publisher||Viking Books for Young Readers|