A Sequel to E. Nesbit’s FIVE CHILDREN AND IT

Probably because E. Nesbit is not as well-known on this side of the pond I was not aware that Jacqueline Wilson was tapped to do a sequel to Five Children and It.  I loved this book both as a child and an adult — it is, for those unfamiliar with it, the clear inspiration for Edgar Eager’s books, say the wonderful Half Magic.  I’ve always thought that there are two sorts of Nesbit lovers —- those that go for her non-magic books like The Railway Children versus those (like me) who go for the magic stories like Five Children and It.  So I’m a bit worried about Jacqueline Wilson’s new sequel, Four Children and It, because, as she notes in this Guardian article,  she came to Nesbit by way of The Railway Children and writes that “I wasn’t usually very keen on fantasy, but Five Children and It was different: it was funny but somehow still true to life.”  That said, I am a Wilson fan, love her sense of humor, and her sharp insights into life today. Because she is less-known here in the US I was happy when she came to my school a few years back to see a line of avid fans waiting to get their books signed by one of those ring-bedecked hands.  I’m off to the UK later this week and will be sure to pick up a copy of this to see for myself how the Psammead copes with 21st century children and their wishes.

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