Five Children and It by Edith Nesbit

Although it was written a long time ago, and is a bit old fashioned at times, I really enjoyed reading Five Children and It. It is a story of magic and adventure set in the English countryside. The five children of the novel are brothers and sisters who find a grumpy sand fairy, a psammead, in a gravel pit near their house. Every day it will grant each of them a wish that lasts until sunset, usually with disastrous and often funny consequences. Each chapter recounts the adventures that each day’s wish brings to them. All the wishes and the adventures that follow highlight for us the moral of the story “be careful what you wish for”. I found it interesting that the children are responsible for resolving these problems through using their brains and wits. There is no magical solution or adult coming to the rescue, but they always manage to find a way to fix things. The author has a great sense of humour and there are plenty of funny moments throughout the book. I also thought it was beautifully written, and the relationship that slowly develops between the children and the sand fairy is lovely. My favourite of the children’s adventures is when the ask for wings to fly with, and of all the characters in the book I liked Anthea best. I would recommend this book to kids who like stories about adventures and magical creatures, aged between 8 and 11 years old. 

Ella K, age 10, Portsmouth, UK

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