Mysterious Traveller by Mal Peet, Elspeth Graham

The Lovereading4Kids comment

Longlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal 2014 A moving and brilliantly researched story about camels, lost princesses and the strength of wisdom and knowledge from the creators of the award-winning Cloud Tea Monkeys, Mal Peet and Elspeth Graham and, stunningly illustrated by P.J. Lynch. It is a mesmerizing and touching tale, illustrating the bond between a child and the man who brought her up like a daughter. Both deliciously exotic and yet portraying warmly familiar and universal truths.

Authors' Note:

This story is set in an imaginary place, but it came about because Elspeth became fascinated by that fabulous and faraway place called Timbuktu. It's an African country now called Mali, and it's where, long ago, traders bringing salt from the north met traders bringing gold from the south. We began to read and think about those traders, those travellers with their camel caravans, making those long, difficult journeys through mountains and deserts. Their lives, and their livelihoods, depended upon the guides who led them through these dangerous places. When we discovered that one of the most famous of these guides was blind it set our imaginations racing.


Mysterious Traveller by Mal Peet, Elspeth Graham

Longlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal 2014 This tale begins with a disgruntled camel, desperately trying to protect a little baby from a violent desert storm whipping up all around him. He is rescued by Issa - the desert guide - who takes the child in, naming her Mariama. She becomes Issa's family and, as he begins to lose his sight, his eyes. Many years later, a mysterious stranger arrives at their doorstep, a stranger who will change both their lives forever...

This edition will be jacketed.


Both prose and artwork come together to produce a stunning book which, regardless of being set in a distant land, tells many a universal truth to be enjoyed by young readers and adults alike Inis blends an excellent sense of setting and a rich understanding of characterisation -- Robert Dunbar Irish Times A moving and captivating book for all ages. Recommended Reads Sympathetically written and elegantly illustrated, this is a beautiful story Books for Keeps

About the Author

Mal Peet and Elspeth Graham live in Devon, in a house not too far from the sea. Elspeth writes in a room on the ground floor while Mal writes in the attic. Sometimes they meet in the middle to write books like this one. It is Elspeth who finds the seeds the stories grow from. She found the seed for Cloud Tea Monkeys while working on a book about tea. Mal is the author of teenage novels Keeper (9781406303933), Exposure (9781406306491) and Carnegie Medal-winning Tamar (9781406303940). Juan Wijngaard, whose parents are Dutch, was born in South America. He came to London in 1970 and studied Illustration at the Royal College of Art. Since then he has produced over thirty books for children, including Green Finger House, his first book and winner of the Mother Goose Award in 1981, Shakepeare's Globe (9780744592795), Tales of Wonder and Magic (9780744581478)and the Kate Greenaway Medal-winning Sir Gawain and the Loathly Lady. He lives with his family in New Mexico, USA.

More books by this author

Loading similar books...

Other Formats

Book Info


48 pages
Interest Age: From 5


Mal Peet, Elspeth Graham
More books by Mal Peet, Elspeth Graham


Walker Books Ltd

Publication date

4th April 2013




It’s a community united by a passion for books and promoting the best there is in children’s literature.

Sam Bateman and family

I love Lovereading as it provides an honest opinion and showcases a range of fiction. Suited to both parents & kids alike, it’s a must-use.

Georgie Rowe – age 16

Lovereading4kids is great, we get books really early never late. We love to read and review, and think you would like it too. The excitement

Jasmine Harris-Hart, age 12

I think Lovereading4kids is an amazing company because of the friendly staff and the fabulous chance to read great books before publication.

Adam Graham

I love lovereading4kids because I’ve read amazing books I would never have picked up, and its opened doors to new genre’s I now love.

Harriet Cunningham

We love Lovereading as my 5 year old loves to read new books before anyone else has a chance, she says it makes reading exciting!

Tracey Chorley

It is fantastic, you get to read lots of books and you always find something new and amazing in them.

Erica Motoc, age 7

It is THE website to use for narrowing down your search for any book. Definitely knocks the socks off any other book review website.

Nickey and Tomasz Hawryszczuk

Lovereading 4 schools