Young Harry Houdini spends his days chaining himself to train tracks and teetering on wires high above the city with his two best friends, Arthur and Billie. But when Harry’s friend and magical mentor, Herbie, disappears, the three friends band together, determined to rescue the beloved magician.
With nothing more than a mysterious puff of purple smoke, an ominous threat, and a menacing Bulgarian for evidence, Harry, Arthur, and Billie embark on a dangerously thrilling investigation that pushes their skill, and friendship, to the limits. But can Harry find Herbie before it’s too late?
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Amie: Welcome to the show, Simon! Tell us why The Magician’s Fire is a perfect middle-grade read.
Simon: The real Houdini dazzled and thrilled the world with his remarkable feats of magic, bravery and escape. But even more exciting are these stories of what might have happened to him as a boy…
Amie: Intriguing for sure! It definitely makes me wonder what kind of mischief he might have gotten himself into as a child. Especially during those middle-grade years when they’re all about self-discovery! Tell us – were you full of mischief as a boy? I mean…er…did you like magic?
Simon: Yes, though I was one of those who always tried to see the invisible bits of the string, the flash of a hand that made the magic work. It seems to me interesting that the great kids character of our age is a boy called Harry who can do magic – and now here is another boy called Harry who seeks to find out the actual truth behind how so-called “magic” is done…
Amie: Oh! I love the idea of Harry Houdini and Harry Potter and their connection in the magical world. One last question. Soaring heights or swimming in an endless ocean?
Simon: My gut response… I ‘d say soaring heights – endless swimming sounds rather tiring…
Amie: Good choice! But the answer was BOTH! We’re going kite sailing today, Simon. You go first!
Simon Nicholson writes for Nick Jr. including such shows as Tickety Tock, Bob the Builder, and Zack and Quack, as well as for BBC children’s programming. He lives in London. Visit him online at www.simonbnicholson.com and on Twitter @SimonBNicholson
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Amie Borst is the author of Cinderskella and Little Dead Riding Hood, which she co-wrote with her 14 year old daughter. She’d like to perform magic so her books could finally write themselves.