Paolo, Emperor of Rome

Mac Barnett, Claire Keane

Paolo, Emperor of Rome
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Paolo, Emperor of Rome

Mac Barnett, Claire Keane

Paolo the dachshund is trapped. Though he lives in Rome, a city filled with history and adventure, he is confined to a hair salon. Paolo dreams of the sweet life-la dolce vita-in the Eternal City. And then, one day, he escapes! Paolo throws himself into the city, finding adventure at every turn.

Join our hero as he discovers the wonders of Rome: the ruins, the food, the art, the opera, and-of course-the cats. Readers will cheer the daring of this bighearted dog, whose story shows that even the smallest among us can achieve great things.


Paolo, a dachshund, lives in a hairdressing salon but he is desperate to escape and experience Rome in all its historic glory. One day he manages to slip out and the city he long imagined comes alive for him. Along the way he fends off vicious cats, which empowers him to declare when he meets a pack of dogs that he will lead them. An act of bravery sees him presented to the Pope and ensconced in luxury in the papal apartments, but grandeur is not for him and he returns to the outdoor life – good on you, Paolo!

The line work in the illustrations is strong and sure so that there is a wonderful representation of movement and drama. I wonder if one day Paolo’s path will cross with Mr Chicken’s! Top storytelling for ages 2+.

Alexa Dretzke is the assistant manager and children’s book buyer at Readings Hawthorn.

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