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The Book of Wizards
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The Book of Wizards

by Michael Hague
 

Are you cunning enough to outwit an evil witch who wants to boil you alive? Are you brave enough to embark on a quest to defeat the dragon that terrorizes kingdoms far and wide? Can you spot a ruse when you see one, withstand the enchantments of a sorceress, and win the hand of the fair princess?

In this magical anthology, master of children's fantasy Michael

Overview

Are you cunning enough to outwit an evil witch who wants to boil you alive? Are you brave enough to embark on a quest to defeat the dragon that terrorizes kingdoms far and wide? Can you spot a ruse when you see one, withstand the enchantments of a sorceress, and win the hand of the fair princess?

In this magical anthology, master of children's fantasy Michael Hague brings us tales that transcend time and place, from Shakespeare to Homer, Arthurian legend to tribal folklore. The nine tales will cast their spell over all who open these pages, and Hague's richly imagined paintings will enchant even the most stalwart young rogue, valiant knight, or steely lass.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Amalia Selle
This compilation contains more than simple stories of wizardry. Many are traditional tales that seem akin to fairy tales. From a variety of origins, the stories range from Shakespeare's "The Tempest" to the traditional Native American folktale "Coyote of the Medicine Woman." The vibrancy and richness of Hague's illustrations bring the stories to life. The story of "Baba Yaga" contains a cannibal witch, and she is illustrated with red, sunken eyes that flame in a skull-like face. "The Enchantment of Merlin" shows the sorceress Vivien weaving a spell of lights around the aged wizard. These stories also delight the reader because they have not been simplified or watered down. Here are tales containing the full spectrum of human emotion. Generosity, love, faithfulness, bravery, and wisdom are contrasted with greed, lust, evil ambition, and foolishness. This is a good selection for adults and children alike whom seek skillful illustrations combined with faithful retellings. Several pages in the back give further information aout each tale's origin. Reviewer: Amalia Selle
School Library Journal

Gr 3-8

In this story collection, Hague loosely defines "wizard" as anyone with magical powers: sorcerer, shaman, or witch. The selections range from well-known tales like "Baba Yaga" to the lesser-known story of the early life of Taliessen and the Icelandic folktale of the Black School, clearly a Hogwarts precursor. He even takes on Shakespeare's The Tempest and the story of Circe and Odysseus. Hague favors ornate language, so readers will need to cope with vocabulary like "fortuitous," "arboreal," and "lithesome" with little syntactical support. Full-page illustrations are brilliantly colored and feature characters with shockingly malevolent eyes, ramping up the drama of the stories. Readers who expect the illustrations to match the text precisely will note that Baba Yaga's dress of "grayish-brown homespun" morphs to red and gold in the illustration and that a dragon's "serrated" teeth are actually individual sharp points. Storytellers will find a lot of good material here, and lovers of magical battles of yore will find plenty to enjoy, too, and may even pick up a few thrilling new epithets: "you pock-faced, craven doer-of-evil-in-the night."-Ellen Heath, Easton Area Public Library, Easton, PA

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780688140052
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
04/29/2008
Pages:
145
Product dimensions:
8.20(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.90(d)
Age Range:
6 - 11 Years

Meet the Author

Michael Hague is renowned as the illustrator of many children's classics, including editions of The Wizard Of Oz, Peter Pan, The Hobbit, and The Velveteen Rabbit, as well as The Book Of Dragons and The Book Of Pirates. He lives with his wife, Kathleen, a frequent collaborator, in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

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