Picture Books

Picture Books

Lemniscaat Picture Books

Lemniscaat, founded in 1963, is a small, independent publishing house, specializing in quality picture books and juvenile novels.

The richness of the European painting tradition is of great inspiration to our illustrators. Their work reflects the diversity and influence of great artists throughout the last centuries from all over the world. We are proud to present our picture book list as not just a remarkable Dutch list, but as a unique European list, as many different styles and influences are reflected as such.

For more titles, please check out our catalogues:

CatalogiPicture Books

For reading copies and other rights inquiries, please contact Sascha Duijvenstein.

Lemniscaat Publishers
P.O. Box 4066
3006 AB Rotterdam
The Netherlands
t: +31 10 2062924
m: +31 6 3040 7816
f: +31 10 4141560

new titles

Holland & A Thousand Things about Holland

Charlotte Dematons

Nederland + Duizend dingen over NederlandAn unprecedented elaborated I Spy book full of breathtaking details

Holland - a land full of surprises, strange traditions, free-spirited people and a rich history.

Charlotte Dematons, known for her well-loved picture book The Yellow Balloon, grew up in France, but moved to the Netherlands to study art as so many have before her. With the eye of an outsider but a warm heart for the country that became her new home, Charlotte Dematons paints with a keen eye for the detail for everything that makes The Netherlands so Dutch.

The idiosyncrasies that make Holland so unique are revealed: from pensionada in unisex rain jackets on their bikes to a grandmother with her walker, skating on the ice, between the scenes of Avercamp, Bruegel and Bosch - and of course the multicultural Dutch society revealed and celebrated with wit and warmth.

Holland is accompanied by a companion paperback (sold separately) explaining all details of every amazing picture, making this book both an I Spy book and an armchair travel guide for anyone already fond of this small country of tulips, windmills and so much more.

Nederland - molen

Tiny Mouse

Janis Ian
Illustrated by Ingrid & Dieter Schubert

Piepkleine muis

A songwriter since she wrote "Society's Child" at the age of 14 and a multiple Grammy winner for "At Seventeen," Janis Ian's charming and witty song has now become a picture book illustrated by Ingrid and Dieter Schubert.

Tiny Mouse follows the adventures of a bored mouse who decides to go to sea and narrowly escapes a grisly death. In his moment of truth, he understands that it's better to be a whole mouse at home than someone's dinner at sea.

Ingrid & Dieter Schubert, creators of The Umbrella and many other picture books, give the tiny mouse his dapper and affable appearance and bring his perilous adventures to life with plenty of sly humor.

Piepkleine muis

Springende pinguinsJumping Penguins

Marije Tolman

Little known yet fascinating facts about animals brought to life by the artist behind The Tree House and The Island.

If a camel gets angry, he will throw up green gastric juice over you.
A sloth moves so slowly that green algae grows in his fur.
Even a blind chameleon takes the color of its surroundings.

Bologna Ragazzi Award winner Marije Tolman, creator of The Tree House and The Island, illustrates in her distinctive style curious, funny, bizarre, unbelievable, disgusting and weird facts about fifty different animals. The animal facts are straightforward nonfiction, Marije Tolman's illustrations are pure fantasy, creating a combination that is sure to engage readers.

After reading and watching Jumping Penguins a visit to the zoo will never be the same.

IJsbeer Springende pinguins


Mies van Hout


The most wonderful book for anyone who carries a child, or already has one...

Better even than Friends, more touching even than Happy, we bring you: Surprise.
From hoping and expecting to caring, from playing to finally letting go, Mies van Hout has created a picture book that will elicit smiles from every parent or parent-to-be.
The book has everything: enchantment, beautiful wonder and a slight undertone of melancholy. It is the beauty of life created in the inimitable style of Mies van Hout: vulnerable and yet strong as life itself.



Mathilde Stein & Dorine de Vos

Poor Pernilla! There she sits, high in her tower, guarded by a dragon and with boring embroidery as her sole distraction. "Be patient and wait until you're saved, so you can get married." Thus commanded her father the king. That's the way a decent princess should live.
There are a lot of knights who would like to save Pernilla, but she has other plans. A fairy tale turned upside down.


Bij ons in het circusThe circus is about to begin!

Koos Meinderts
Illustrated by Annette Fienieg

Ladies and gentleman, children of all ages!
We proudly present: The Circus of Meinderts and Fienieg!

The playful rhymes of Koos Meinderts and bright large prints of Annette Fienieg have proven to be a golden combination in On My Street.
In The Circus Is About to Begin the ringmaster announces his wide selection of animals. From the Living Penguin Cannonball to the knife throwing fox, the animals and their acts are the shining centerpiece of the circus.

A variety show that will cheer you up.

Bij ons in het circus kanon Bij ons in het circus Sushi

De schoenen van de zeemeermin

The Mermaid's Shoes

Sanne te Loo

Walking on the beach during the last day of her vacation, Ida finds something extraordinary: the shoes of a mermaid (which in fact are scuba flippers).

When Ida puts the mermaid's shoes on her feet, she knows that she has found her true destiny: she's actually a mermaid. She makes herself a stunning mermaid tail and goes in search of a place where a mermaid can feel like a fish in water.

It takes a while, but finally she finds an equally surprising as enchanting, perfect home for a mermaid. 

De schoenen van de zeemeermin

Boelie's Christmas Device

Mathilde Stein & Chuck Groenink

Boelie the piglet has been living in a cabin in the woods for years now. Every year he prepares Santa a warm welcome: he makes a drawing, he bakes Christmas cookies, he sings Christmas songs ... but every year Santa's sleigh flies over his cabin without stopping. In a last desperate attempt to have a proper Christmas, Boelie builds a structure that Santa will not be able to ignore. And it works...

It will be a Christmas to remember.

Boelies kerstplan


Cees Kranen & Paula Gerritsen

A girl meets a snowman. It's the beginning of a wonderful friendship that everyone knows will not be able to last. Yet you keep hoping, because the two are clearly made for each other. The friendship is
intense, maybe even more so because of the inevitable finiteness.
And the end comes.
But the love remains.



Ingrid & Dieter Schubert

Gewoon gek

In Opposites, the Schuberts have a blast as they present contrasts far beyond big and small. Best of all, the Schuberts let their imaginations fly as high as a crocodile - or perhaps flying crocodiles only happen in Schubert books? A multitude of details will ensure requests for repeat readings.

'A dozen two-page spreads illustrate simple antonyms: big and small, hide and seek, naughty and nice, and more. The pictures are full of mischief. ... Compositionally, these spreads are not for beginners; although the gutter clearly defines the division between opposites, the illustrations typically depict one landscape, and the many animals scattered across them require fairly sophisticated eyes.

Good fun for older preschoolers and early-elementary children eager to flex their conceptual muscles.'

-Kirkus Reviews

En hoe komt toch een olifantHow much does the gray in an elephant weigh?

Erik van Os, Elle van Lieshout and Alice Hoogstad

When you visit at the zoo,
Do you wonder like I do . . .
Why does a giraffe have spots of brown,
And do zebra's stripes go up, or down?

The wonder and variety of various zoo animals is explored in this book as full of questions as Kipling's Elephant's Child. From an elephant to a peacock, a rhinoceros to a flamingo, an inquisitive child and his grandfather visit and ponder each animal. 

oN MY Street

Koos Meinderts & Annette Fienieg

Bij ons in de straatAt No. 1, Mrs. McQueen

Her house is large and painted green,
And inside there resides a Queen,
With royal ears and regal chin,
She always wears a noble grin.

For every child born to one of her friends, Annette Fienieg used to make a colorfully decorated tee shirt featuring a character you would fall in love with.

Now it is time to introduce those creations - Mrs. McQueen Fifi LaPointe, Johnny Deck, Lightfingers Louie and more-- to a wider audience. In Our Street is an indestructible big format board book that will survive countless trips down the street and back again.

The Tree House

Ronald & Marije Tolman

2010 Winner of the Ragazzi Prize for Fiction at the Bologna International Children's Book Festival

2011 Outstanding International Best Book of the Year, The United States Board on Books for Young People (USBBY)

'The Tree House is a wise, clear, even poetic, example of how an established topos of the collective imagination may be revisited with a fresh eye to reveal a continued relevance to modern times... The book's message is not declaimed, but is conveyed quietly. It pleads for an enlightened ecological stance in which an intense awareness that we are part of nature does not forego our need for elegance and intellectual enquiry.'
- Jury of the Ragazzi Prize for Fiction at the Bologna International Children's Book Festival

'A wordless picture book, breathtaking in its beauty, scope, and originality. ... Fellow illustration junkies, come to me now, and let me tell you that this book is a wonder. Gorgeous is what it is. The colors, the lines, the wide open spaces, the space the Tolmans give this book to breathe, the compositions...I could go on. There is also much humor and affection in this wordless story. It's one of the most beautiful, winning picture books I've seen in a long while. Each spread is a wonder. I never tire of this one.'
-7 Impossible Things Before Breakfast

"Imbued with quiet effervescence, this wordless picture book imagines a child-sized paradise in which dreamy scenes unfold one after another ... Readers of all ages will want to return to this treasure box of images again and again"
- Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)

De boomhut

The Island

Ronald & Marije Tolman

Het eiland"Like a young girl I saw recently in a bookstore, I just run my hands over each page and say, 'This is so beautiful.'"

A polar bear descends from the clouds and stands on an island with a flock of penguins; he journeys from place to place, swimming with dolphins, riding on the back of a hippo and eventually connecting with a violin-playing raccoon. Having found what he was looking for, a companion or art itself, the bear settles down to watch the stars with his friend.

The entire story in this oversize book is told in double-page spreads. The natural landscape looms large, and the animals small, in each painting. Cool blues of sky and water verge into sun-drenched reds when African animals appear. An abstract structure, possibly a lighthouse, dominates many of the images. Dodo birds appear, suggesting a thread about the environment or the extinction of species. Each reader will have a different version of what occurs, but the pictures and the bear's journey beg to be returned to again and again.

For anyone who wants to develop visual acuity in children, "The Island" provides a springboard for conversation, reminding all ages of the wonder and magnificence of the natural world. And it demonstrates that we don't always need words to support an amazing visual experience."
- The New York Times Book Review

Het eiland

Wie heeft de dikste billen

Who Has the biggest bottom?

Marijke ten Cate, author of Where is my sock?

This silly circus celebrates that everyone has something special!

A backyard cross between a circus and a county fair. Who has the most pointy nose? The longest ears? The dirtiest hands? The biggest  bottom? The readers are the winners as each animal is recognized individually and then all together in one splendid celebratory spread.



Mies van Hout

The fish stand out in vibrant colors, showing a spectrum of emotions - from happy to sad, from angry to surprise - for the youngest book lovers to discover.

Clear, strong lines and radiant colors that seem to smile at the reader characterize Mies van Hout's drawings.  In Happy, Mies shows all the emotions a young child encounters. Each double page spread is devoted to one fish, showing a particular emotion with its name  in lettering that expresses the same feeling. Swim into Happy where the dazzling fish sparkle against the dark background and let the images spark laughter and empathy.

'a delightful amuse-bouche of a book'
- Publishers Weekly, starred review

" Mies van Hout's Happy is a tour de force of underwater awesomeness and emotion, showcasing what an artist can do with a few pastels, black paper and something fundamental to express...On the last page, a gloriously plump whalelike creature surges upward, ending the book with a surprising sense of closure: "delighted." No reader could feel otherwise.'
- The New York Times Book Review

"The line, color, and texture make each page a pleasure to return to, and each single word is fully expressed in its corresponding picture. Along with the azure-and-sky-blue ovoid fish at the end, readers will pronounce themselves, in yellow, white and green letters, 'delighted.'"
- Kirkus




Mies van Hout

A monstrously beautiful book in the style of Happy

Happy was an international hit that showed off Mies van Hout's uncanny ability to convey feelings with her vibrant illustrations.

With Friends she goes one step further and shows emotional interactions. Just as she made the fish of Happy uniquely hers, here she uses monsters to show different situations - they cuddle, laugh, play, but they also fight, tease and more - making the images recognizable for little monsters of all ages.


Valentine and his Violin

Philip Hopman

'The tale of Valentine, a cherubic young lad. Violin in hand, Valentine plays highfalutin melodies like "Ode to Joy" and the "Marche Militaire." Unfortunately, Valentine is a bad violinist - teeth-clenching, cats-hissing, plates-breaking, nails-on-a-chalkboard bad. So bad that the townspeople send him packing, much to his naïve surprise.

The art is absolutely gorgeous. Hopman's graceful watercolor illustrations have a sophisticated pastel palette and dynamic compositions. Each page is filled with detail: the diversity of animals running from the boy's excruciating music, the lush landscapes with cleverly hidden extras (the Statue of Liberty, a Venetian gondola), the delicate scribbles of forest foliage. Hopman does wonders with the most sketchy of lines; two dots and a squiggle, and voilà: a face in exquisite auditory agony.'
- The New York Times Book Review

Valentijn en zijn viool

The Snowgirl

Koos Meinderts & Annette Fienieg

The Winterqueen has one wish: a daughter. The Snow Ghost fulfills her wish. He gives her a beautiful girl that dances and sparkles through life. But the price the Snow Ghost demands is high. One day he will be back to claim the little girl. And that is exactly what happens, the queen is filled with grief and the winter has never lasted this long. Will the Snowgirl ever come back to her mother to thaw out her frozen heart?

This winter fairy tale is one that makes each heart melt. Annette Fienieg made enchanting images that bring the fairytale to life.

Het sneeuwmeisje

Miss V. Stitchtite and the seven scoundrels

Astonishing debut of artist Dorine de Vos, to a story by Mathilde Stein

An entertaining and comical story by Mathilde Stein that gallops along as rhythmically as the horses of her scoundrels, seven badly behaved robbers, who are off to rob a stagecoach. But they have not bargained for their next victim, Miss V. Stitchtite, expert in good manners, intolerant of rudeness. Determined to teach the scoundrels their manners, she succeeds in turning them into tidy, well behaved young men. The story has a surprising ending.

Juffrouw Van Zanten en de zeven rovers

It's raining sunlight

Annette Fienieg & Koos Meinderts

Annette Fienieg and Koos Meinderts have worked together in the past, but always Annette made her illustrations after Koos had finished his poems. For this book they switched roles. Annette made her illustrations first and Koos made his poems afterwards. The result: a creative and imaginative book. Annette's illustrations are refined and elegant. A remarkable ensemble!


Miss C. Mouse is having babies

Elle van Lieshout, Erik van Os & Marije Tolman

A new volume in the Miss C. Mouse series. Both text and illustrations are recognizable and funny. For her illustrations in Miss C. Mouse finds a perfect home Marije Tolman received a Vlag en Wimpel 2008, the most important recommendation award for children's books in The Netherlands.
Miss C. Mouse is having babies is a wannahave for all expecting mums and dads.


The Umbrella

Ingrid & Dieter Schubert

A wordless picture book that tells a thousand tales

A little dog finds an umbrella in the garden on a windy day. The moment the dog picks up the umbrella, it catches the wind and pulls the dog skywards. This is the start of a fantastic journey around the world.
The wind carries the umbrella and the dog all over the world, from the desert to the sea, from the jungle to the North Pole.

2012 Outstanding International Best Book of the Year, USBBY

'A marvelous treat for the senses; masterful drafting and splendid color make every spread worth lingering over.'
- Publishers Weekly

'All of the double-spread pages of this wordless picture book are filled with movement and light ... As with many great picture books "The Umbrella'' hides images within images ... There is plenty of room for imagination here, and great beauty besides.'
- Boston Globe


Fly with the Umbrella

Ingrid & Dieter Schubert

Color your own adventure!

The Schubert couple also made Fly with the Umbrella, a book full of inviting sketches, yet to be finished and colored. What can be nicer for a child than to create his very own picture book?