The Bathing Costume by Charlotte Moundlic
Or the Worst Vacation of My Life

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Moundlic’s tale of bourgeoning self-confidence is on the lengthy side, but it resonates with emotional truth.


The book's protagonist is Michel, an eight-year-old Parisian boy. His brother Martin, who's twelve, detests him, and he detests Martin right back. This summer, Michel will go away alone, which really means without his mom, to stay with his grandparents while his parents move apartments. To add to the horror, Michel's older boy cousins will be going, too. As Michel says, "To put it simply, they are big, strong, and pals with Martin. I am their scapegoat." Recounted by Michel himself, his vacation doesn't turn out to be such a complete zero after all. Between a competition to see who can shower the least, wild bike rides without gear, and a tooth that finally falls out, Michel discovers both independence and real moments of happiness.

The text is both very funny and moving, with good reason, for we see an eight-year-old's vacation with his grandparents and older cousins through his own eyes, with all of the little things that are important to a boy of eight: the dumb things that he'll never tell his mom; the small triumphs; the disregard and mocking of the older cousins; the shame of having a bathing suit that slips off in the pool; the freedom of being away from home; and the satisfaction of overcoming fears. As always, Olivier Tallec's illustrations render all the emotions of our little hero with an enormous amount of expressiveness, talent, and sheer gorgeousness.


About Charlotte Moundlic

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Olivier Tallec was born in Brittany in 1970. After graduating from the Ecole SupA(c)rieure d'Art graphique in Paris he worked in advertising as a graphic designer, after which he devoted himself to illustration. Since then he has done numerous illustrations for newspapers and magazines and has illustrated over 50 books for children.
Published May 28, 2013 by Enchanted Lion Books. 40 pages
Genres: Action & Adventure, Children's Books.
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on Mar 30 2013

Moundlic’s tale of bourgeoning self-confidence is on the lengthy side, but it resonates with emotional truth.

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