The Boy and the Crocodile

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The Boy and the Crocodile“A long time ago in a far away place,

a small crocodile lived in a swamp.”

So begins this beautiful story. A story of kindness, of nature and of how Timor got its shape.

With a mixture of description, dialogue and fabulous illustrations we meet a crocodile who needs to reach the sea in order to feed. A little boy comes along and carries the crocodile to the sea, saving his life. Years later the boy calls on the crocodile to help him with his dream to ‘see the world’. They follow the sun and travel for years, cue many great images depicting different countries. The story concludes by explaining how Timor gained its unusual shape – and I’ll leave that for you to discover for yourself, when you read the book!

On one level you’ll be sharing a parable of friendship and kindness with your children, and on another you’ll be teaching them about another country. The end papers give lots of details for you to answer that question – about the orphanage, the legend and East Timor itself. There’s even a Tetum translation of the story.

The illustrations have been produced by the children of the Familia Hope Orphanage in East Timor – their honesty, colour and great detail lend the book a charm all of its own.

The high volume of copies bought prior to publication means that 5,000 can now be printed in Tetum and distributed for free across East Timor.

You can follow the amazing journey of The Boy and The Crocodile on its very own blog.


Ed. Martin Hughes
Children from the Familia Hope Orphanage
Affirm Press

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