Monday, January 30, 2017

Discovering the Wimmelbuch | München

It's never too early to introduce your child to Oktoberfest. The aspects that go beyond beer, that is. The food, the rides, the games, the music and the very many characters one might encounter at the annual celebration of all that's wunderbar about Bavaria. Of course, Munich isn't just about beer and games. And this lovely little prezzie that I, sorry, my son received over the holidays is testament to that.

München, a wimmelbuch -- wordless picture book with a series of panoramas detailing motley characters and their stories against different backdrops -- by illustrator Annegret Reimann, is a little journey through the most iconic places that define the Bavarian capital. It's like a travel book for little children (and their adults), but without words, through illustration.

It starts off with a beautiful day at the Isar river with characters frolicking with cookouts, barge parties, rollerblading or just taking a simple stroll. As we move ahead, we're treated to scenes from the English Garden, Olympic Park and the art museum until finally ending up at Munich Hauptbahnof, the city's main railway station.

In each panorama, we get to meet some of the same characters and see how their stories progress while also stumbling across some new folk. There's the grumpy old lady with a dog, seen in every picture looking upon others  with complete distaste. My favourite spotting is of said grump staring daggers at two pigs sunbathing in the nude. Don't worry though. She brightens up eventually when her doggie leash gets entangled with one held by a grumpy old man, bringing her a sweet and happy ending. Then there's Baby Finn who rolls down a hill while his Mummy chatters away on the phone, and gets rescued by a fox and a bear in Lederhosen. The most beloved character of them all, in my opinion, is Max the Dog who's seen reading a book, playing the guitar and giving a riveting speech about art through different pages.

As a child, my favourite pastime was to flip through books and invent stories about the pictures. Opening this wimmelbuch brings back memories of those simpler times, and the hours spent in imagination. This book will hopefully bring my son the same joy once he gets older and is able to focus on the big picture rather than big pictures.

Until then, I'll keep this book safely and lose myself in its pages every once in a while.

Discover more Wimmelbuchs from the same publisher at

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