The traditional Christmas meal in Prague isn’t turkey or ham but a special kind of Christmas fish. On Christmas Eve, Tom chooses his live fish at the market and calls it Peppo. Carefully, he carries it home in a big bag of water through the streets of Prague’s old town.
Tom loves his new pet, but what fate awaits Peppo as the Christmas meal draws near? This charming, child-friendly story presents one culture’s Christmas traditions in fascinating detail. At its core is a heartwarming tale of a boy and his grandfather as they both learn about doing the right thing.
Marit Törnqvist’s accomplished, vivid artwork brings the story of Tom and Peppo and the beautiful city of Prague to life.
(Ages 5–8 years)
“To the bustling streets of Prague, we go for Tom’s Christmas Fish, an endearing story of a boy and his grandfather and the live freshwater carp they procure, like ‘everyone in the whole country,’ for their Christmas dinner. Rita Törnqvist-Verschuur’s snug watercolors quickly situate us amid the pastel buildings and stone bridges of the Czech capital.... Marit Törnqvist's emotionally astute story will acquaint readers ages 4 to 9 with European traditions—such as making carp-shaped cookies—that may be new to them.”—Wall Street Journal
Rita Törnqvist-Verschuur was born in Amsterdam in1935, and studied Swedish language and literature. She lived in Sweden for ten years with her husband and three children, including her daughter Marit. Rita worked as a translator, and translated many books by Astrid Lindgren, before writing her own books for children and adults. She wrote eight volumes of memoirs, starting with her experiences as a child during the Second World War.