The Children’s Book Review | December 2, 2019
Written by Ewa Dahlig
Illustrated by Marta Dahlig
Age Range: 3-8
Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: Tumilu (2019)
What to expect: Shyness, Bravery, and Friendship
Many of us can feel a little shy at times. We can sometimes feel like an outsider looking in when we’re out of our comfort zone. Some of us can even feel this way among familiar faces; we sideline ourselves while others have fun around us. Mimi and the Brave Magic is a sweet picture book aimed at shy children who feel just this way. The story encourages them to connect with others through a little support, bravery, and practice.
The joyful town of Tumilu Valley smells lovely thanks to the summer blooms and the smell of Nana’s delicious apple pie from Mimi’s house. Mimi and Nana decide to take a slice to Mrs. Goose. Along the way, they encounter some of Nana’s friends—Mr. Snail and Mrs. Caterpillar—and Mimi feels shy. So shy that she hides behind Nana, under Nana’s dress, and even beneath her long bunny ears. She feels so shy that she does not talk, unintentionally sending the message that she does not want to be friends. Mimi notices that Mr. Snail and Mrs. Caterpillar do not seem quite as happy after their neighborhood encounters with her. She doesn’t enjoy the feeling of seeing their cheer dissipate. Her friends Tutu and Lulu help her see that just saying a simple, polite hello can be enough to make a connection and brighten somebody’s day (as well as her own). They teach her a little rhyme: “One two three, one two three. / Let brave magic work for me.” Soon, she doesn’t even need to repeat the rhyme; the joy that comes from those that she greets with a hello is enough to encourage her to be brave.
Author Ewa Dahlig has cleverly concocted a sincere story that demonstrates the importance of practicing social skills. It’s lovely to see Mimi stay true to her quieter character, while also learning to interact with others. The illustrations are utterly charming with the feel of entering a candy land type world where you can almost smell the apple pie steaming from the pages.
Mimi and the Brave Magic is a beautiful choice for any shy child trapped in a cycle that is keeping them from connecting with others. There is plenty of room in the world for characters like Mimi and stories like this one that will help young readers feel more comfortable in social settings.
Buy the Book
Available Here: https://tumilu.com/
About the Illustrator
Marta had started drawing before she learned to walk. She would painstakingly smear paper sheets (or floor, or carpet, or walls…) with crayons for hours. After more than 30 years nothing much has changed. But at least she is more picky about the surface she paints on.
However, as she grew older and had two children of my own, she decided to move into picture book illustrations.
For more information, visit: https://tumilu.com/
Dedicated Reviews allow authors and illustrators to gain prompt visibility for their work. This non-biased review of “Mimi and the Brave Magic” was sponsored* by Marta Dahlig. Learn more about getting a book review …