The Emporium of Imagination by Tabitha Bird. (2021).
**4.5 out of 5 stars**
Welcome to the Emporium of Imagination, an unusual shop that travels the world offering vintage gifts to repair broken dreams and extraordinary phones to contact lost loved ones. But on arrival in the tiny town of Boonah, the store’s custodian Earlatidge realises he’s dying. The clock is ticking to find his replacement, because Boonah clearly need some restorative magic. Like 10 year old heartbroken Enoch, who is mourning his father while nurturing a guilty secret. Like Ann, who came back to be close to her dying grandmother but it’s Enoch’s father who dominates her thoughts and regrets. Even Earlatidge in his final days will experience the store as never before and have the chance to face up to his own tragedy.
It honestly amazes me that writers have this extraordinary amount of imagination, and then the skills to successfully share those stories with the rest of us. This book is an example of a beautiful story that will stay in your mind long after reading. I adored it, the whole concept of this magical shop to assist those with grief in their hearts was just fantastic. I also loved that the author has included and addressed many types of grief; not just grief for those loved ones lost, but also missed opportunities and regrets that we hold inside ourselves. This novel is both heartbreaking and heartwarming, and I can assure you it is an emotional read.
Overall: this is a beautiful story with a touch of magic that will warm your heart by the end and make you wish you could visit the Emporium of Imagination yourself.