Book Review: The Well-Wishers

The Well-Wishers
The Well-Wishers by Edward Eager

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The five children are back for more magic from their wishing well. But this time the magic is including all sorts of unsuitable people in their adventures, and the children aren’t sure if they can accept these new people encroaching on their magic business.

Can the school bully really be reformed by the magic, or does he deserve to be punished for his previous schoolyard crimes? Will the children try to help an extremely annoying opera diva, or will they avoid her like the plague? And what about the crazy witch-lady from the local insane asylum? Surely, the magic wouldn’t expect them to make friends with a dangerous witch! But somehow the magic pulls through, the children find the courage and resourcefulness to overcome every obstacle, and they spread some good magic around their neighborhood while still having fun! They learn that anyone can become a friend if only you show them acceptance and kindness. Continue reading

Book Review: Magic or Not?

Magic or Not?
Magic or Not? by Edward Eager

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I loved rereading this children’s classic! When twins Laura and James move to the country, they find an old wishing well, and begin to test the magic waters with their wishes. The wishes seem to come true, but in such regular, mundane ways that the children can’t be sure… was it magic or not? The eccentric Lydia comes blasting into their adventures, and their neighbor Kip joins in the fun. The wishing well definitely appears to be influencing their adventures, but only when they wish something good for others, never when they wish for themselves. So the four friends attempt a quest of good deeds, with mixed results when the disgustingly spoiled rich kid, Gordy, begins to tag along and pester them. Continue reading

Book Review: The Time Garden

The Time Garden
The Time Garden by Edward Eager

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Another brilliant book in this series! This time Roger and Ann, and their cousins, are packed off to the seaside for the summer, and discover a garden of thyme where a froggy Natterjack uses the magic of thyme to send them back in time on various adventures.

I love how random and funny the magical adventures are, and how the cousins all have different reactions to the time-traveling situations they get into. Eliza is always jumping in and taking action without thinking it through first. Roger is sensible and worried about keeping everyone safe and doing the right thing. Ann is compassionate and sweet and takes the time to notice other people and their needs. Then there’s Jack, who is growing up into teenhood, has little interest in magic, and starts noticing girls.

There is something so wholesome and delightful about each of these books that keeps me reading and coming back again and again!

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