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Children's LiteratureThis reissue of a book originally published 25 years ago, features Babar as an amateur magician. His children and their friends gather for his first show. All goes well when he pulls two doves out his hat and then covers Flora with his cape. He removes the cape to reveal Arthur instead. However, something goes awry when he causes Zephir the monkey to fall asleep and levitate. Zepher floats out of the room and across the street. He flies through a window into the Old Lady's house disturbing her game of chess with Cornelius. Then he floats into the countryside and breaks right through an artist's canvas. A fish grabs his tail as he sails over a lake. Finally, Babar and Arthur catch up with him. Babar waves his wand and shouts, "WAKE UP, ZEPHIR!" and Zephir does. He falls onto Babar's head and asks where he is. He does not remember a thing about his adventures. De Brunhoff's signature illustrations are charming, as usual. Sure to appeal to aspiring young magicians and other toddlers during story time. 2005, Abrams, Ages 3 to 5.
—Phyllis Kennemer, Ph.D.