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The Well-Wishers Paperback – August 16, 1999


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Editorial Reviews

Review

"A keen insight into human behavior . . . , a subtle twist of humor, and an ability to hold action to a fast pace, keep Mr. Eager's books well out in front for popularity and charm. This one will delight." Christian Science Monitor

About the Author

Edward Eager (1911–1964) worked primarily as a playwright and lyricist. It wasn't until 1951, while searching for books to read to his young son, Fritz, that he began writing children's stories. His classic Tales of Magic series started with the best-selling Half Magic, published in 1954. In each of his books he carefully acknowledges his indebtedness to E. Nesbit, whom he considered the best children's writer of all time—"so that any child who likes my books and doesn't know hers may be led back to the master of us all."
 
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Product Details

  • Grade Level: 4 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 790L (What's this?)
  • Series: Tales of Magic
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers; Reprint edition (August 16, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0152020721
  • ISBN-13: 978-0152020729
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.6 x 7.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #262,293 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Kevin Killian HALL OF FAME on August 27, 2004
Format: Paperback
Anemic sequel to the earlier and superior MAGIC OR NOT? The same children reappear, Kip, Lydia, Laura, Gordy in an upscale suburban neighborhood something like Scarsdale, NY or Greenwich, CT. Children love this book with its search for magical wishing wells, as well as trying to figure out Eager's clever puzzle--are the things that happen to them the result of their wishes, or is it all just a coincidence? Adults will like the spectacle of the different John Cheever-ish neighbors being lampooned in a variety of smirky ways. One added bonus is that, his character Madame Salvatini, the retired opera singer, reminisces of the days when she was young and she was just "plain Maggie Smith." This book was written well before Maggie Smith became an international star. "No one gave a hoot about me when I was plain Maggie Smith; but they drank champagne out of Madame Salvatini's slipper!"
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By John D. Cofield TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 11, 2009
Format: Paperback
This is Edward Eager's sequel to Magic Or Not. In The Well Wishers Laura, James, Deborah, Lydia, and Kip are joined by Gordy, a misfit who, unusually for Edward Eager, isn't particularly intelligent and definitely hates to read. Eager continues the equivocation over whether the magic is real or not that he started in Magic Or Not, making this book, like its predecessor, a bit less sparkling than Eager's other works. Nevertheless, there are many fine features to The Well Wishers. Each child gets a chapter to express his or her own point of view on the adventures, and Eager's trademark multitudinous literary and historical references continue. Additionally, there is some gentle but thought provoking commentary on the world of the late 1950s and the early 1960s which might elude many of the children who read it, but will appeal to discerning adults looking for quality reading for the young. And, like all of Eager's works, those adults who come back to them after first reading them as children will recognize with pleasure that they are as funny and fresh as we remember them.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Inexhaustible Reader on March 17, 2009
Format: Paperback
I read this book a few months ago and I still get a warm fuzzy feeling when I think of it. It's filled with 'old school' values which is a lovely change from todays 'live for yourself' kinds of stories. The children in the book concentrate all of their summer vacation on helping others. How about that? Tell me that's not going to give you a happy glow. I would reccomend this for ages 7 (although there is a mushy part near the end, tee hee) right through to 110. I didn't read the first in this series so I thought I'd let others know that it is completely unessasary... however, I'd be more than happy to try the first one now, of course!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By McClean on July 24, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My son (8) loves the whole series of Eager's 'magic' books. Every chapter ends with him saying, "Next chapter!" and we have had one rainy day that let us have the excuse to read a whole book in one sitting, with him hanging on every word and full of excitement about what was happening. The true measure is that even after we have finished a story, he keeps talking about the characters and the events and imagining what it would be like to find 'magic' in his everyday world, too.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Kaui on November 27, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Edward Eager's books are well written, magical and educational. I discovered these books this year, 2012, as a result of my 8 year old son's interest in magic books. Amazon pointed me to these and we now own all seven of the series - they are well worth it. Published in the 1950's they remain interesting and imaginative.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jill Vanderwood on June 29, 2008
Format: Paperback
The Well Wishers
By Edward Eager

This is the second book in the series. We have been introduced to James, Laura, Deborah, Lydia, Kip and Gordy in the book, Magic or Not.

This book is written in the point of view of the children. Each child takes his or her turn telling the events of the story, in their own words.

James admits that he might be too old to believe in magic. Laura thinks that the magic of the well rightfully belongs to her, since she discovered it. She is very upset to think that Gordy has started the magic again, by tossing a threatening note into the well. She is also upset that Gordy got the first wish and the first magical adventure, leaving the rest of the group out in the cold.

When Lydia is faced with a bully from her past, she makes a wish that is not in harmony with the well. This starts the ball rolling with dire consequences.

Now the kids from Silvermine Road really know they are on an adventure and there is no doubt that the well really is magical.

I enjoyed this story. I also thought it picked up the pace a little, from the first book.

Jill Ammon Vanderwood, author of two magical adventure books:
Through the Rug
Through The Rug: Follow That Dog (Through the Rug)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Aleetha on February 5, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I gave this book, as well as the rest of the series by Edward Eager, to my 8-year old niece for Christmas. After opening her presents, she immediately started reading the book and had read 3/4 of the book before they went home that evening. She said it was "Awesome!" and she really enjoyed reading it. I'd say this series would be well recommended.
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