The Magician's Elephant
A Marvelous Story of Lost and Found
Peter Augustus Duchene held a coin that did not belong to him. It was the property of his guardian, an old soldier named Vilna Lutz. Vilna had sent Peter to buy fish and bread. But in the market there was a fortune teller and Peter was torn. The honest thing is to buy the bread. But he needed the answer to one burning question. And that question was, Is My Sister Still Alive? According to Vilna she was stillborn, but Peter wasnt sure.
The magician was old and his reputation was falling. Performing in the Bliffendorf Opera House that night, he wanted to do something more wonderful, more magic than he has ever done before. And he did. Rather than bringing forth a bouquet of lilies, he brought forth an elephant, crashing through the roof and crushing Madam LaVaughns legs, confining her to a life in a wheelchair.
Adele has always lived in the Orphanage of the Sisters of Perpetual Light. She knows no other home. Soon after the incident in the Bliffendorf Opera House, she begins dreaming of elephants knocking at the door of the orphanage.
Leo Matienne is a policeman. He lives below Peter Augustus Duchene in the Apartments Polonaise. He is not a man who accepts what is. He is a man who asks What if?
How these peoples lives intersect at the end of the century before last, in the city of Baltese is so wonderfully told in Kate DiCamillos newest book, The Magicians Elephant. I believe it is her best book to date and cant wait to put it into my personal library. The way she words the book, the way she describes the events and the city is amazing. The story is heartwarming. The drawings by Yoko Tanaka are excellent and add so much to the book. The Magicians Elephant is a book for all ages, not just children. It talks about life and family and honesty. It makes you believe in fairytale endings. It makes you wonder. Whether you read the book by yourself or read it aloud to someone else, the proper thing to do is make sure you read The Magicians Elephant.