Paddington’s Suitcase by Michael Bond Review

Eight book collection in a very portable suitcase

Paddington's Suitcase

The name’s Bond, Michael Bond, the author of timeless classic loveable children’s stories that all started a long, long time ago … well, back in the year 1958 anyway (66 years ago). What are these stories I hear you ask, these are the tales of an anthropomorphised blue duffel coat wearing bear with an old red bush hat and brown battered leather suitcase. He travelled from the deepest, darkest Peru and has the manners that more people could do with emulating these days. I am of course talking about Paddington Brown, or better known as Paddington Bear. And we are going to delve into Paddington’s Suitcase, no not his beloved brown one but one that children will love just as much.

Getting children to read (they really should be reading something every day – we have some tips that might help) can be a challenge. It all starts with reading to them, moving on to reading with them and then reading independently. The challenge can be to find books that grab and hold their attention, but a good way to start a love of books and reading is giving children their own mini home libraries (as well as making use of your local library). Being able to browse, pick a book off the shelf and sit down and read can foster a lifelong love of books. A good place to start with building a small, children’s home library is with Paddington’s Suitcase by Michael Bond. Paddington’s Suitcase is a collection of eight books of everyone’s favourite bear, Paddington – a treasure trove of tales that has more surprises packed in it than Paddington has marmalade sandwiches under his hat!

Paddington’s Suitcase; this portable library of fun tales is packed with eight story books, written by Michael Bond and illustrated by R. W. Alley, that promises to take you on a journey through London and beyond, without the need to visit Paddington Station,  purchase a train ticket and certainly doesn’t require a passport. The suitcase includes:

  • Paddington and the Busy Day: Paddington finds himself at a loose end, which spells trouble for the Brown family! They have lots of suggestions for jobs to keep him occupied, but Paddington’s ways of doing things are not always what’s expected . . .
  • Paddington and the Marmalade Maze: When Paddington Mr Gruber visit Hampton Court Palace, they are joined by a group of tourists who all expect to come back home with them for tea! Luckily, Paddington finds an a-mazing way out of the situation . . .
  • Paddington and the Tutti Frutti Rainbow: When the Browns take Paddington on a trip to the seaside, a storm threatens to dampen their day. Will an extra-special ice-cream and some wishful thinking bring the sun out again?
  • Paddington at the Fair: Paddington enjoys a fun-filled day at the fair with the Browns. He tries his paw at the coconut shy, slides down the helter-skelter and even jets off on the sky-rocketing Space Craft ride! All in all, a rather exhausting day for a small bear, as the fortune-teller knowingly predicts . . .
  • Paddington at the Palace: When Mr Gruber takes Paddington to Buckingham Palace to watch the Changing of the Guard, there are so many people in the way he can’t see anything! Luckily, a mysterious someone “on high” appears to like small bears . . .
  • Paddington at the Zoo: When Paddington visits the zoo, he takes enough marmalade sandwiches to last all day. However, he is none too pleased when he realises how popular they are with the zoo’s inhabitants!
  • Paddington Minds the House: When the Browns go out for the day, Paddington decides to surprise them by baking a chocolate cake and spring cleaning the house. However, it isn’t a good idea to try and do both things at the same time, as Paddington soon finds out . . .
  • Paddington the Artist: When Paddington goes to an outdoor Painting exhibition, he is inspired to work on his own masterpieces. And it’s not long before he sells some of his paintings to a mysterious art collector!

This delightful collection of stories will charm children and adults alike, much like the bear himself who has a penchant for finding himself in the stickiest of situations.

Each book is a short fun adventure that children (and their adult helpers) will just adore as Paddington, who always has good intentions with his kind heart, seems to find himself in a lot of rather sticky situations, and not always from the marmalade sandwiches!

Overall, this portable handy child-sized “suitcase” is excellent. Containing eight fabulously fun tales about Paddington and his adventures (and mis-adventures) that children can take and read anywhere, it even has a little carry handle.

The books are a good size for children to hold and read; they are about 20 pages in length, with a good size, easy to read text. All have been beautifully illustrated and help portray the fun in the stories very well.

The stories are excellent, with Paddington navigating the complexities of life with the same ease as he does the London Underground. And he also proves that he can be just as much of a domestic disaster as a culinary connoisseur.

But what’s truly magical about the books in this luggage library is how they capture the essence of childhood wonder and the hilarity of life’s unexpected turns. Paddington may not always get it right, but he always gets it done with a dose of charm and a dollop of marmalade, and always with kindness, manners and very good intentions.

As Paddington says, “Things are always alright in the end. And if they’re not alright, then it’s not the end.” So, grab this literary suitcase and join Paddington on his delightful (mis)adventures and lose yourself in the enjoyment of reading.

In over 60 years Paddington still hasn’t lost his wonderful charm, even after reaching the height of being a film star, having The Paddington Bear Experience (opens 31 May 2024 at London County Hall on the Southbank), bus tours, and statues (you can see my picture of one of the Paddington statues below). Despite all this fame, his stories are still great to lose yourself in.

Paddington’s Suitcase is a wonderful addition or starting point to a young child’s home library. And this convenient set with carry handle makes the books extremely portable so the tales of Paddington can be enjoyed EVERYWHERE!

Rereading Paddington as an adult was just as enjoyable as reading the stories when I was a child. Paddington is a timeless character that is still lots of fun to read for the young and old and young at heart.

An excellent set that is perfect for any home library and would make an excellent gift.

RRP: 5/5

RRP: £16.99 (but currently only £5 on Amazon)

For more information about Paddington, visit Available to buy from Amazon here.

DISCLOSURE: All thoughts and opinions are my own. This review uses an affiliate link which I may receive a small commission from if you purchase through the link.