In all the years that Elinora Gassbeek had been matron of the Little Tulip Orphanage, not once had the Rules for Baby Abandonment been broken. Until the autumn of 1880, when five babies were 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 - who were swiftly and firmly deemed ‘the unadoptables'. Twelve years on the children luckily still have each other - until the fateful night a most sinister gentleman appears and threatens to tear them apart. Determined to stay together whatever the cost, the gang decide to make a daring escape. They flee the frozen canals of Amsterdam on an adventure packed with puppets and pirate ships, clock-makers and cruel villains - and with only a scrap of a clue to guide them to their mysterious new home...
(Cover illustration by Ayesha Rubio)