Having worked for Bristol Libraries for nearly 20 years, I am always delighted when I read that an author lives and works in this vibrant city, although I have just heard that Susie has moved to Devon; yet another hub for fantastic authors and illustrators. I first came across Susie Bower when her book “School for Nobodies” appeared in 2020 and was excited to hear about this new title.
“The Three Impossibles” is the story of a young girl called Mim, who is actually Princess Jemima, but hates all of the trappings that go with being a ‘perfect princess’. She lives in a castle, but is forbidden to leave its grounds and the whole town is said to suffer from a curse that occurred when her mother died, just as Mim was born. The arrival of a new governess called Madame Marionette soon sets the cat among the pigeons. There is something very sinister about this teacher, her servants and her so called ‘pet’ that she keeps hanging in a covered cage; she appears to have a secret agenda and Mim is worried by what that might mean to the inhabitants of the castle. Mim is a very inquisitive person and loves escaping to the library and reading her way through the books, unfortunately she can only reach those at the start of the alphabet. But then she comes across a book that is definitely out of place and there is something very unusual about it. “The Three Impossibles” positively glows, as if it want to be found, but Mim finds it impossible to open the book, which just makes her more determined to investigate this puzzle. the story develops at a tremendous pace as Mim uncovers the secrets surrounding her home and the inhabitant of the lighthouse that is just off the shore. Will the book finally reveal its secret and can Mim actually break the curse that has ruined lives for so many years? Well, you will have to read the adventure to find out, I am afraid.
This is a fabulous story about a young girl who just doesn’t fit in to the world that she lives in. She loves science and finding things out, hates dressing up and wants to have more freedom, but I think above all she wants to be loved by those around her, especially her father. There is magic and mystery, curses and creatures of myth for Mim to contend with, but with the help of her friend Smith and Miranda (the cursed grand daughter of the court alchemist) she battles to overcome evil. There is a wonderful lesson for us all about striving to be the best we can be, whilst also being true to our inner selves. So often, this world tries to mould us into something we aren’t, so Mim reminds us to recognize our true selves.
What made you want to write for young people? Or was it a happy accident?
By the time she hit her teens, Susie Bower had lived in 8 houses and attended 7 schools. This theme continued in her working life: she’s been a teacher, a tour-guide, a typist, a workshop facilitator, a PA and a painter. She formerly wrote and directed TV programmes for children at the BBC and Channel 4, for which she won a BAFTA Award, and she currently writes audio scripts. School for Nobodies, her debut novel, is also available from Pushkin Children’s. Susie lives in Devon.