By Mary Sheerin
Judith Kerr, acclaimed children’s writer and illustrator died recently at her home in London after a short illness. She was 96 years of age and had been working right up to the end.
She had published over 35 books that sold millions of copies and were translated into more than thirty languages. Possibly her most famous one and, my own personal favourite, is The Tiger Who Came To Tea. It was her first book, published in 1968. It was an immediate best-seller and has never been out of print.
It’s about a big Tiger who invites himself to tea in a suburban home; is welcomed in without any surprise; sits down at the table and scoffs everything in sight – even raiding the fridge (including the father’s beer) and drinks all the tap water – not even leaving enough water for the family to wash themselves.
But it has a happy ending. The Tiger exits replete and happy and Daddy comes home from work and takes the family out into the dark night for sausages, chips and ice-cream. What more could you ask for? And the illustrations are brilliant!