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The Magic City by E. Nesbit

The Magic City (1910)

by E. Nesbit

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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295838,041 (3.86)7
  1. 20
    Knight's Castle by Edward Eager (Torikton, Hollerama)
    Torikton: Two excellent stories about children magically transported to a land of toys.
    Hollerama: Both works are stories that feature children visiting the lands of toys.
  2. 00
    Wings and the Child: Or the Building of Magic Cities or the Building of Magic Cities by E. Nesbit (muumi)
    muumi: The Magic City is a fantasy for children (and former children) about a boy and girl who build a city and enter it. Wings and the Child presents Nesbit's philosophy of childhood and ideas about why that kind of fantasy play is so important -- with photographs of component buildings, and an entire city, built by the author from the remarkable bric-a-brac of a Victorian home. The two books are complementary.… (more)

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Showing 1-5 of 8 (next | show all)
One of my absolutely favorite books as a child, partly because like the hero Philip I loved to build cities not only out of toy bricks but out of anything else available. In this story Philip by magic gets into a city he has build, along with a girl, Lucy (namesake and perhaps inspiration of Queen Lucy of Narnia, since C.S. Lewis said the Narnian children were influenced by Nesbit), and --accidentally-- their odious nursemaid. (Philip comes out of the city and has to choose to go back in by tears "Tears are very strong magic." --a line I have always remembered. It is said by Mr. Noah (originally the Noah in a Noah's Ark set, but animated as a wise guide to the children). The city has prophecies of the coming of two mythic figures, the Deliverer and the Destroyer. The Deliverer has a series of deeds to perform to earn the title, which Philip sets out to do, with Lucy's aid (originally they were not friends, but they become so.) The nursemaid also claims the Deliverership, and is known throughout the book as the Pretenderette (to the Claimancy of the Deliverership) , though as is remarked, the Claimancy of the Destroyership is also open.. Spoiler Warning. . Ultimately she calls in the barbarians from Caesar's Gallic Wars (one of the books of which the city is built) to seize power, but is defeated when Philip calls up Caesar himself and his legions. Yet Caesar greets the defeated Pretenderette with respect "I hail, madame, your courage." --part of that ethic of understanding for enemies that runs through Nesbit's work, and impressed me as a child. .
There are a lot of other psychologically sophisticated aspects of the story -- Philip's beloved elder sister Helen had marred Lucy's father, a situation he found hard to accept, but he is able to work through it with an encounter with Helen n an island they had invented together which he is finally able to give away. ( )
  antiquary | Oct 1, 2013 |
An unexpectedly lovely book. I’m working through Nesbit because I have only read her major books–The Treasure Seekers, etc. This one is on the fantastical side, but very beautifully written. It’s very predictable, but I felt that it was both of its time and still relevant to a modern audience. ( )
  maureene87 | Apr 4, 2013 |
One of my favorite books of all time. Read it when I was around 12 and ten years later I still love it. There's so much imagination and adventure. I would recommend this book to people of any age. Yes, it's a children's book, but it's just too good to miss. ( )
  Abigayl | Jan 3, 2013 |
The Magic City is all about imagination and creativity. It's a wonderful story. ( )
  miskend | Oct 10, 2010 |
This is a very wonderful story full of magic and mystery. I would suggest ages 9-12 ( )
  BookBrook | Feb 15, 2010 |
Showing 1-5 of 8 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (3 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
E. Nesbitprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Millar, H.R.Illustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Philip Haldane and his sister lived in a little red-roofed house in a little red-roofed town.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0929605535, Paperback)

This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:58 -0400)

An extremely unhappy ten-year-old magically escapes into a city he has built out of books, chessmen, candlesticks, and other household items.

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