Magic Thinks Big

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Magic the cat is very large,
very round,
and unable to make up his mind.

Magic the cat is sort of silly,
sort of sleepy, and stuck in one spot.

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Magic the cat may not be moving,
but his imagination ...

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Overview

Magic the cat is very large,
very round,
and unable to make up his mind.

Magic the cat is sort of silly,
sort of sleepy, and stuck in one spot.

Look!
Magic the cat may not be moving,
but his imagination has taken flight.

A cat sits in the doorway and tries to decide whether to go inside where he might get fed again, go outside where he might have an adventure, or stay where he is.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The affable title character of Cooper's (Dance!) tale not only thinks big, he is big. Sitting in the doorway of his owner's lakeside cottage, this sleepy, rotund feline "contemplates his next move," musing about what he might do or not do "Should he go in?/ Or out?/ Or should he stay right where he is"). The option of staying inside has its pluses ("Maybe he can convince them to feed him again") and of course he could take a nap, but then again the cat knows that fun awaits outdoors. Perceptive youngsters will suspect that it is Magic's imagination rather than his body that goes into action as the panel and full-bleed watercolors portray him hunting loons, catching a salmon and riding on the back of a swimming moose to an island. In this idyllic setting, he picks berries and eats blueberry pie (and the fish) with a trio of friendly bears. After Cooper's spare, wryly understated illustrations chronicle these alleged adventures, readers flip the page to find the contented cat still sitting lazily by the door. The narrative concludes, "Maybe, if he stays right where he is, Magic's next move will come to him." Cooper's clever use of the hypothetical and his story's fittingly languid tone have decidedly droll results that cat owners especially will appreciate. Ages 3-up. (Apr.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
The ways of a cat are strange indeed. Who can figure out what they are thinking? Cooper does his best to take us inside the head of a large, rather corpulent feline named Magic as he contemplates whether to go out, or in. If he goes in, he could go to the fridge or to the mouse hole or just to nap. Outside he could chase the loons, or since that is a bit strenuous he could just watch. He imagines a magical trip with bears to an island for a feast and, of course, a nap. But if he just stays where he is, maybe his "next move will come to him." So there he sits, the only real action in his imagining. Pencils and watercolors create very simple scenes which hint at landscapes or a few details of interior rooms. Our cat hero fills most of the pages with his stolid body. The minimal text and bare-bones pictures encourage readers to create other stories, as we smile at Magic, the quintessential cat. A photo of the real Magic is on the jacket. 2004, Greenwillow Books/HarperCollins Publishers, and Ages 3 to 7.
—Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-In this charming adventure, Cooper takes readers into the mind of a sizable tabby cat. Sitting in a doorway, Magic has a big decision to make: "Should he go in? Or out? Or should he stay right where he is." Not one to waste energy, the cat ponders his options at length and uses his imagination to consider all of the possibilities. Perhaps getting a bit carried away, he muses about catching a salmon and riding on the back of a moose to an island to share it with some friendly bears. However, in the end, it is revealed that Magic has not moved a muscle. The simple text is full of dry humor and whimsy. The dreamy pencil-and-watercolor illustrations are a pleasing mixture of soft colors and thick lines. The artwork has a fluid quality that perfectly captures the feline's fanciful journey. A photograph of the real 18-pound cat appears on the back cover. This magical picture book will delight young animal lovers.-Julie Roach, Malden Public Library, MA Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Magic is the ultimate cat. As he sits in the doorway looking outside, he considers going out to chase loons, or maybe watching somebody else chase them-like the dog. But he's hungry so maybe he could catch a salmon or watch the bears catch one and share it and when ready, he could ride Moose home across the lake again-or maybe not. Or maybe he should just stay put. Cooper has captured feline behavior and attitude to a T in both story and art. His illustrations of rotund, pear-shaped Magic are a departure from his previous small, wispy images such as in Ice Cream (2002), as he uses full-blown perspectives to project Magic's point-of-view. The result is totally charming and could only be achieved by someone who thoroughly knows cats; voila, a photograph of the real Magic (at 18 pounds) is on the back cover. No maybes about it, this very large, very round, very imaginative cat will work his magic on readers, grown or not, who will purr with delight over his story. (Picture book. 4-6)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060581640
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/30/2004
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: AD460L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.25 (d)

Meet the Author

Elisha Cooper is the award-winning author of Farm, Beach, Magic Thinks Big, and Dance!, a New York Times Best Illustrated Book, as well as other acclaimed titles. His books for adults include the memoir Crawling: A Father's First Year.

Elisha Cooper lives with his family in New York City. He has loved some great dogs in his life.

Elisha Cooper is the award-winning author of Farm, Beach, Magic Thinks Big, and Dance!, a New York Times Best Illustrated Book, as well as other acclaimed titles. His books for adults include the memoir Crawling: A Father's First Year.

Elisha Cooper lives with his family in New York City. He has loved some great dogs in his life.

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