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The Travelling Bookshop: Mim and the Anxious Artist by Katrina Nannestad

Title: The Travelling Bookshop: Mim and the Anxious Artist

A pink sky behind buildings in Paris with a poodle in front of an artist and a girl in a red beret with a cockatoo on her shoulder. Mim and the Anxious Artist by Katrina Nannestad

Author: Katrina Nannestad

Genre: Fiction

Publisher: HarperCollins Australia

Published: 3rd August 2022

Format: Paperback

Pages: 240

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 elegant Paris where she meets Pierre, a talented but anxious artist who cannot bear to give up his paintings, even to sell them. He’s miserable and poor. His customers are cross.

Mim knows they’re here to help Pierre. To calm him down. To turn him into a successful artist. To make him truly happy.

If only Mim could find him the right book. If only Dad would stop getting muddled and giving everyone the wrong book.

The glistening new adventure from award-winning author Katrina Nannestad and beloved illustrator Cheryl Orsini

~*~

Mim, her father and her brother have arrived in Paris, thanks to Flossy, the horse that pulls the travelling bookshop. When they arrive, they meet Pierre. Pierre is an artist but he can’t give away the portraits he paints! Everyone is angry with him, and to top it all off, Mim’s dad seems to be giving everyone the wrong books. Mim is sure of it this time – everything he gives out seems to be muddled. So it falls to Mim to work it all out, and hope that everyone who has been given the wrong books can somehow use them – or that if they come back, her father will give them the right book. But most importantly, can he help Pierre?

Book three in this delightful series takes us to Paris on an artistic, word, and letter filled journey. Whilst Mim tries to work out how to help Pierre, she collects words that remind her of Paris, and Nat becomes fixated on the letter s – and fills another tin with every s that he can find. The magical caravan changes to suit Paris, and grows when it needs to, which gives the novel a beautiful and magical feel that I loved and that I am sure other readers of all ages will love. It means that Mim and her family will always have the books they need, and the books translate themselves into the language of the country they are in. Mim and her family also get to speak the language of the country Flossy has taken them to, and this is just one of the amazing things about this series that I think will be well-loved by all readers.

This series allows us to travel throughout Europe (at least so far) without ever leaving our homes, proving that books can transport us to all kinds of places. It’s also a calming and gentle series, focusing on community, friendship, and family, and allows the characters to make mistakes and show their vulnerabilities. I loved that the magic of the bookshelf is accepted as normal, and love Mim as a character. She’s lots of fun and I think she makes it a really special series. Katrina Nannestad’s ability to write a series like this and also her historical fiction is wonderful, and I can’t decide which I like more, because each is special in its own way and brings something unique and special to the readers. It is also lovely to see that she can write for two very different age groups and audiences, and even as an adult, I am enjoying all her writing, because each book always has something to offer.

Words and letters continue to be important and magical, and the collections that Mim and her brother have are both wonderfully inventive. This series is filled with such hope and whimsy, bringing words and the world to life for us. It is a series that I have been following since the beginning, and I am looking forward to seeing where Mim and her family go next with their wonderful bookshop. It’s such a fun series and readers of all ages will get something wonderful out of it.

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