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Bed-Knob and Broomstick (A Combined Edition of: "The Magic Bed-Knob" and "Bonfires and Broomsticks") Paperback – September 1, 2000
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About the Author
Mary Norton (1903-1992) lived in England, where she was an actress, playwright, and award-winning author of the classic Borrowers novels.
Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series, and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. Pre-order the official script book today. Kindle | Hardcover
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Top Customer Reviews
This is the story of Carey, Charles and Paul Wilson who, while staying with their aunt in Bedfordshire, suddenly discover that a neighbor, Miss Price is a witch! Not your stereotypical witch, Miss Price is a prim and proper lady who is willing to buy the children's silence with the gift of a magic bed knob that will allow the children to travel through space and time. Seeking to visit their mother, the children find themselves scooped up by the London police. Next, Miss Price takes them to an isolated tropical island, only to discover that cannibals inhabit the island. Their final adventure takes them to Restoration England, where they meet a forlorn (and inept) necromancer, Emelius Jones.
This story (actually two books combined into one) is quite charming. In a gentle and freewheeling fashion, Mary Norton draws the reader along on a fantastic adventure. This book is just right for the young reader, with a few nice illustrations, and a wonderful storyline.
After a miserable trial run to visit their empty London house the children seek Miss Price's help; this responsible student witch insists on accompanying them on a real adventure: to an uninhabited (?) south sea island. After near disaster and a battle of will and sorcery, the four barely make it back hone, to stern consequences. The kids' only souvenir is the bed knob which Paul sneaks out and back to London, where his older siblings try to convince him that it was just a dream.
Following the success of this short story Norton wrote a charming sequel, BED KNOB AND BONFIRE, set two years later, in which the three children and later Miss Price travel back in time--to the mid 17th century. This was a dangerous age to be alive, what with the great fire of London and the impending Black Plague. As you know, Time Travel can work both ways--within literary limitations; Miss Price is surprised to find Emelius, a down-at-heals necromancer, as her houseguest. But in which Time will he (and she as well) be most content? A joy ride for kids of all ages!
This book describes the childrens' encounters with the village's secret witch and their adventuring together in space and time. The manners and relationships are very English pre-war. It is a little reminiscent of the tone of Wind in the Willows.
The book is divided into two parts as it was originally two books, however the characters and situations are the same so it can easily be read as a single book.
What will be familiar is the three child characters - Carey, Charles and Paul - who were carried over whole into the movie. However, the witch, Ms. Price, is a very different and more complicated character in the book than she is portrayed to be by Angela Lansbury. The first novella is like the movie, in that the children discover Ms. Price's witchy tendencies, come into possession of the magic bed-knob, and have travel adventures. The second novella involves time travel and a necromancer from the seventeenth century, and almost none of that made it into the movie. World War II and soldiers play a major role in the movie, but there is no mention of the War from the 1957 edition onward.
All of that said, is the book worth a read? I would say yes, and suggest that in a number of particulars it is more satisfying, although less cinematic, than the Disney effort. In the book the children are more interesting and their relationships, and sibling conflicts, are more developed. They are polite but a bit reckless and spirited and they are the featured characters in the first novella. Ms. Price mostly just serves to introduce them to the magic bed-knob and to supervise their adventures.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The Borrowers books, also by Mary Norton, were a big part of my childhood and I was looking for something like that to share with my 3YO as bed time reading and from the... Read morePublished 29 days ago by Jennifer Lally
I liked the first part better than the second. Not as close to the film. I like the island a lot better in this bookPublished 6 months ago by dabuda1
This is one of my favorite books. When I was small I used to read it over and over again. Funny thing is, I never liked Borrowers much. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Monika Robinson
This is a great classic that all children should read. Mary Norton does a great job keeping the story line moving. But the best part is the suspense. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Kindle Customer
Heard Mary Norton working on chapters of these 2 tales when our families met for Holidays, we kids in her study while grown-up relatives chattered over cocktails. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Fierce & Fond Reader
Having grown up with the Disney version it's hard for me to picture anything else. Still really enjoy it though.Published 12 months ago by Montech80
This was good. I had never read the book, but had seen the Disney movie, and figured my kids might like to read the book before seeing the movie. Read morePublished 13 months ago by M. Stevenson