*** Original and Unabridged Content. Made available by CLASSIC COLLECTION 600.***
The first book in the Psammead Trilogy, Five Children and It follows the fantastical adventures of five siblings who encounter an outlandish creature with a strange ability to grant wishes. Though the idea of having their wishes brought to life, the children quickly discover that not every wish turns out to be as wondrous as initially believed. The children’s novel offers a generous amount of fantasy, humor, and adventure, as the children are repeatedly subject to wishes gone amusingly awry.
The magic begins when playful siblings Robert, Anthea, Cyril, Jane and their baby brother move to the countryside during the summer, not yet aware of the excitement to follow. One day, while digging at a sand pit to reach the other side of the world, the group comes across a bizarre furry creature with a misshapen body known as a Psammead, which they later learn has power to grant wishes. Subsequently, the Psammead agrees to grant one wish per day, but not without a catch, as he grants the wishes according to his own mischievous interpretation. He also informs them that each wish lasts until sunset. So, the siblings find themselves in quite the surprising predicaments, as their ambiguous wishes are manipulated by the Psammead, who in turn equips the children with wings, provides them with unrecognizable beauty, a useless treasure, and a terrifying encounter with Native Americans. Despite their initial thrill about their wishes being fulfilled, the siblings promptly discover the negative side of their desires, as Nesbit cleverly presents the notion that one must be careful what they wish for, because once granted, its accompanying consequences might not seem all that glorious.
Celebrated throughout generations, Five Children and It has been able to sustain its magical appeal through its endearing characters and the vivid portrayal of the ingenuous wishes. In addition, Nesbit’s novel evocatively brings to life the imagination of its audience, as it awakens the child within with its effective use of witty language and descriptive imagery. Nevertheless, the novel presents a magical haven sure to be revisited time and time again.
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