Review: Reinhardt Jung’s “Bambert’s Book of Missing Stories”

by writereaderly

Bambert is something close to a midget, a self-exiled writer in his inherited home above a grocery store. Once he has written 10 stories, Bambert sets them free with balloons (with a return address) so they can find their true home. He also releases a “blank” story, waiting to see how it writes itself. This book tells of the stories’ – and Bambert’s – journey home.

This was first published in Austria, and is a more sophisticated children’s book (for around 8-10 year olds, I guess) than most in the Anglo tradition. Bambert is an unhappy, physically sick adult, writing to set himself free, and Jung doesn’t hide that from child readers. Bambert’s stories are also not saccharine, more in the bittersweet mould. Recommended.

Where it came from: JH’s Bookshelf
Time & manner of reading: Sneak-read and a bookended pair of bed-reads
Where it went to: Home
Reminds me of:
Who I’d recommend it to: Most anyone
Also reading: The Heart of the Matter by Graham Greene; The Reivers by William Faulkner; Moby Dick by Herman Melville; Working Hot by Mary Fallon; My Brilliant Career by Miles Franklin