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How many of you read the Amelia’s Notebook series by Marissa Moss when you were young?

Because I’m pretty sure I devoured every. single. one. AND even had my very own notebook to write in (with Amelia’s help of course!) Honestly, though, it has been years since I picked up one of Marissa Moss’s books, so when I came across her newest story, I was ecstatic! Not only is it set in Paris AND involves time travel, but it also has all of the little doodles I fell in love with in the Amelia stories.

Author: Marissa Moss| Goodreads
Publisher: Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
Genre: Historical Fiction, Time Travel, Adventure
Pages: 210

For all Mira knew, her mother had firmly decided she had had enough of family life and running away was her way out.

That is until Mira receives a post card from her mother six months after she left with a postmark of Paris, France. In an effort to find her, Mira’s father whisks Mira and her brother off to Paris, but while visiting Notre Dame, life changes suddenly when Mira touches a gargoyle and is sucked into the past. It is there that Mira meets the famous painter Degas, and glimpses her mother a time or two. Understanding that her mother didn’t run, but instead is trapped, Mira embarks on an adventure that will not only save her family, but just might change the future, too.

5 reasons why this book is marvelous!

  1. To begin with, I will honestly admit that I am not a huge fan of historical fiction. In all truthfulness, history class (except for the WWII era) often bored me. So needless to say, I am usually hesitant to pick up historically based novels. However, I loved Mira’s Diary: Lost in Paris. The major story behind the plot is actually very moving and it is told in a way that I believe will have readers wanting to know more about this time in history.
  2. Ah, Paris. Le Sigh.  Pretty soon I am going to be traveling there (via my Friday Follies of course) but for my journey this is one book I would definitely take along. Moss captures the Parisian setting beautifully, and every moment that I was absorbed in Mira’s story, I felt as if I was actually in Paris–be it present day or the historical city.
  3. Moss’s signature illustrations are once again part of her story, and though I had a little trouble with the picture pages locking up on my Nook, I very much enjoyed the visual additions to the story. Moss captured historical moments and Parisian landmarks in a way that played very well with Mira’s hope to become an artist. Plus, who doesn’t love a little drawing here or there to help visually flesh out a story?!
  4. Mira is absolutely, 100% an awesome kid and heroine. Family is of the utmost importance to her, and she is the type of heroine who will go to any depths to fight for her family. Not only that, but she is very compassionate and has a beautiful heart. Without giving away any of the story line, I just want to say that I was so proud of Mira for fighting for what was good and right.
  5. Not only does this novel tell a wonderful, probably often overlooked historical story, but it is chalk full of lessons that kids will take in without ever knowing the difference. I love how Moss uses Mira and her adventure to speak to readers about what is right in the world, and the importance of fighting for what one believes in. This is definitely one of those stories that will find it’s way into my middle grade classroom library, as well as one I would use to teach.

Book Talk: Have you read Mira’s Diary: Lost in Paris? If so, what are your thoughts? Did you feel like you were right there in Paris along with Mira? How about the historical aspect of the novel? Had you ever heard of the situation before? What does it make you think about now?

Hopeful reading!

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