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The Travelling Bookshop: Mim and the Baffling Bully by Katrina Nannestad

Title: The Travelling Bookshop: Mim and the Baffling Bully

Three girls in front of windmills and houses on grass. Below a purple sky. One girl is skipping, and another has a cockatoo on her shoulder and is holding a book. The text reads The Travelling Bookshop: Mim and the Baffling Bully by Katrina Nannestad.

Author: Katrina Nannestad

Genre: Contemporary

Publisher: ABC Books/HarperCollins Australia

Published: 28th July 2021

Format: Paperback

Pages: 224

Price: $14.99

Synopsis: The right book might just change your life …

Mim Cohen roams the world in a travelling bookshop, with her dad and brother and a horse called Flossy. Flossy leads them where she will, to the place where they’re needed most … the place where the perfect book will find its way home.

Now Mim has arrived in a pretty Dutch village where she meets Willemina, a kind and gentle child, who is being bullied by a girl named Gerda.

Mim knows they’re here to help Willemina. To change her life. To make her strong and brave and happy.

If only Dad would find her the right book. If only he would stop giving everyone else the wrong book!

From the beloved author of The Girl, the Dog and the Writer in Rome and We Are Wolves comes an enchanting series for young readers.


Mim and her family road the world in a travelling bookshop – her, Dad and little brother Nat. When they arrive in Amsterdam, Mim meets Willemina, who is being bullied by Gerda. Mim is determined to help Willemina with the right book, because the right book will help everyone. Dad seems to be giving everyone the wrong book … but is Willemina the one who really needs help, or is it the bully, Gerda?

Katrina Nannestad is a fantastic author, and her books are always full of heart, whimsy and wonder whilst dealing with issues that affect us all such as bullying, families, friendship, war and illness. In this new junior fiction series, she looks at the power of books and friendship, and what it means to really listen to people and observe life. This book arrived as a surprise on my doorstep, and it is one that I think is filled with magic and power, with the comforting power of stories and the role that they play in our lives.

This beautiful book captures the delights of Amsterdam and the joy of travelling around the world as seen through the eyes of a child. It is a love story to books, words and letters and the role they play in our lives –  I love books like this, and it seems that the recent years have seen a proliferation of books like this and characters on television like Rory Gilmore – showing that reading is a thing of beauty, cool and filled with fascinations that will capture  the imagination of readers young and old, and I know that confident readers and book lovers will slip into this book from the very first words of the book.

Mim is a delightful character, a friend that we would all love to have and to share our love of words and books with. What I loved about this book was the classic, timeless feeling about the story, and the sense that it could take place at any time over the past thirty or forty years. I loved the absence of technology as we rely on it today building a world where imaginations can run wild, where handwritten letters still exist, because it allowed the characters to partake in life in a way that existed prior to the proliferation of technology and in a pre-COVID world. This book gives readers a lovely escape into a fictional world celebrating a love of books and the bookish world.

This is a series that I feel will be beloved and timeless and will allow readers to travel when they have to stay at home. I loved this book, and look forward to more in the series.

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