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*****= An all-time favorite
****The Witch's Walking Stick
by Susan Meddaugh
Reviewed December 17, 2006.
Walter Lorraine Books (Houghton Mifflin), 2005. 32 pages.
Susan Meddaugh’s books remind me of William Steig’s—delightful, imaginative and satisfying stories with cheery but detailed cartoon-like illustrations.
This book opens with an old witch and her magic walking stick. “Over the years she had used it to make a thousand miserable wishes come true.” It has just a little bit of magic left. She particularly likes turning creatures into something worse—birds into bats and squirrels into goldfish (with no fishbowl) and things like that.
One day a cheerful little dog passes her on the path. She raises her stick to turn it into something—and he thinks she wants to play and grabs it from her. When she yells at him in fury, he runs away, still with the stick in his mouth.
Now we meet a
named Margaret, forced to cook and clean and chop wood by her older and
bigger brother and sister. When Margaret
encounters the witch, the dog, and the walking stick, interesting
to happen. Let’s just say that the use
Margaret puts to the little bit of magic left in the witch’s walking
Copyright © 2006 Sondra Eklund. All rights reserved.
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