Monday, November 16, 2009

The Magician's Elephant

I've got to be honest with you: I didn't expect much from this book. I've read a couple of Kate DiCamillo's other books, and while I thought they were cute, they didn't really stick with me. This one, however, is magical.

The Magician's Elephant tells the story of Peter Augustus Duchene and his search for the truth: is his sister alive or dead? He asks a fortune teller this question, and is startled by the answer: "Follow the elephant." But there are no elephants in the town of Baltese; that is, until the magician conjures one that falls through the ceiling of the opera house.

DiCamillo writes in lyrical prose (some of these sentences are absolutely beautiful) and introduces us to colorful characters that each play a special role in helping Peter find the truth.

This book is nothing short of beautiful; the prose, the illustrations (by Yoko Tanaka), and the story are gorgeous. I was bold enough to turn to my husband when I finished reading last night (in one sitting, I might add) and say, "Our kids will read this book someday." And how do I know that? Because I'm going to read it to them.

(I just added this to my Fall Into Reading challenge post - because I can, that's why - and, even though I read it yesterday, I'm still counting it for Monday's What Are You Reading challenge because I was expecting to read it today, but it was so good I finished it all in one go.)


  1. Great review. I never heard of this book, but it sounds very lovley. I do like the cover of this book!

  2. Thanks for stopping by my blog -- and I'm glad other people see the absolute beauty of this book! I'm adding you to my RSS reader. And I'll link to your review on my blog! :) -Cori