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The Wizard of Washington Square
by Jane Yolen

Category: Fiction / Fantasy
78 pages; ISBN: 0765350165

Rating: 9/10  (Ratings explained)
Reviewer: Harriet Klausner


The Wizard of Washington Square
Jane Yolen
Starscape, Mar 2005, $5.99, 78 pp.
ISBN: 0765350165

Preadolescent David accompanied by his canine D. Dog walks around Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village feeling lonely. His family has just relocated from Connecticut to New York and he has no friends. When his canine’s ball lands in the fountain in the middle of the park he meets Leilah who goes into the water to retrieve the toy. Leilah informs him that the fountain is home to a wizard.

David scoffs at the inane girl, but soon they encounter THE WIZARD OF WASHINGTON SQUARE PARK, who explains he is a second rate failure, which is why he has been exiled to the land of non-believers. He proves his incompetence when he accidentally turns D. Dog into a statue. Before the Wizard can figure out how to rectify his blunder, antiques dealer Mr. Pickwell steals the statue to sell it. David and Leilah team up to retrieve D. Dog while the Wizard works on a reversal spell.

THE WIZARD OF WASHINGTON SQUARE PARK is a fantastic urban fantasy that the elementary school crowd and their parents will enjoy. The story line enchants the audience as David and Leilah become friends while trying to rescue his dog from a terrible fate. The Wizard will remind readers of Oz as he bungles spells. Jane Yolen entertains her young readers with a fine friendship fantasy.

Harriet Klausner


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