Author

Gideon Samson

As a boy, Gideon Samson (b. 1985) wanted to become a professional football player. He even played for a real club for a while. But, aside from the fact that he wasn’t good enough, he discovered that the world had more to offer him. Writing. He dropped out of his studies of Dutch language and literature in Amsterdam, deciding instead to deliver parcels and to write. In 2010, he became the youngest-ever winner of a Zilveren Griffel, for Ziek (Sick). He made a big impression, particularly among teen readers, with Zwarte zwaan (Black Swan, 2013), about a girl who fakes her own death. Under the pseudonym of Menno Fernandes he wrote about his experiences as a referee in amateur football in De Scheids (The Ref, 2014), a book for adults.

Black Swan

Black Swan

(Leopold, 2012, 212 pages)

Gideon Samson’s Black Swan punctures the myth of the innocent child. He shows that children can be ruthless: they don’t stop to think about how serious their actions are or about the consequences for other people. For manipulative Rifka, life is a game and she is the winner. Samson has written a haunting, stunning, taboo-breaking literary novel about a darkly fascinating character.

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Washed Away

Washed Away

(Querido Kinderboeken, 2014, 176 pages)

11 July, 2010. Pieter (23) is watching the World Cup final between the Nether­lands and Spain when he receives a friendship request on Facebook from Elin, a Swedish girl. This catapults him five and half years back into the past to a period of voluntary work in Sri Lanka, when he spent the best Christmas Eve of his life with Elin, on the beach, in the waves. The next morning, that same sea engulfed coastal areas across Asia.

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Island Days

Island Days

(Leopold, 2016, 176 pages)

Jakob Zervakis has a Dutch mother and a Greek father. When his mother books a holiday with her new boyfriend at a luxury hotel in Thailand, she sends Jakob to stay at his father’s restaurant on an island in the Mediterranean for the first time in years. Jakob takes thirty comic books with him, just to be on the safe side.

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Animals Afloat

Animals Afloat

(Leopold, 2017, 32 pages)

Noah and his ark, God and his fury — the Bible story has been adapted thousands of times, but rarely as ingeniously as Gideon Samson has done in this book to accompany Annemarie van Haeringen’s pictures.

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Zeb.

Zeb.

(Leopold, 2018, 96 pages)

One day, the teacher says that, from now on, two plus two is five. Nearly everyone accepts the new maths. And other strange things happen too. Suddenly there’s a zebra in the class; she says her name is Ariane. Ozzie goes to buy a joke to impress Ziva, but can’t find one that he can afford. Noepy takes part in a demonstration against the abolition of crying. Ziva’s family take it in turns to have hiccups.

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