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The Houdini Boxby Brian Selznick
Synopses & Reviews
Victor is forever trying to escape from locked trunks, walk through walls, and perform any number of Houdini's astonishing magic tricks...without success. Then — amazingly — he actually meets his idol, and begs Houdini to explain himself. A mysterious locked box is the magician's only answer, and Victor is left to wonder: Does the box contain the secrets to the most famous magic tricks ever performed?
"Selznick splendidly captures the sense of wonder that surrounded Houdini. Equally impressive are his evocative drawings; by turns droll, touching and downright silly, they bring added vitality to a captivating book. More than anything, however, this ambitious work teaches the importance of faith and the ability to believe in the impossible." Publishers Weekly
"Magicians and mystery lovers of all ages will enjoy this well-told, visually satisfying story." Children's Literature
Victor idolizes Harry Houdini. When he has the chance to meet his hero, Victor begs Houdini to share the tricks of his trade. Houdini gives Victor a mysterious locked box. With never-before-seen sketches and a new message from Selznick, this classic is reissued. Illustrations.
This illustrated biography of Harry Houdini combines original artwork and archival artifactsandmdash;including photographs, playbills and posters, letters, and even some of Houdiniandrsquo;s own stage propsandmdash;to bring the story of the worldandrsquo;s greatest escape artist to life.
Readers will learn all about Houdiniandrsquo;s unique rags-to-riches story, from his birth in a Hungarian ghetto to his death from a ruptured appendix at age fifty-two. The book details his career as an escape artist and explains how he evolved into the andldquo;King of Handcuffsandrdquo; on the vaudeville circuit and became an international star as his escape attempts reached ever more elaborate and dangerous heights. Filled with little-known facts, this is the perfect book for readers interested in magic and the history of Houdini.
The book includes a bibliography and index.
Praise for Harry Houdini
andquot;andhellip;a beautifully illustrated biography of this most fascinating manandhellip;With entertaining sidebars on metamorphosis tricks and dime bars, Harry Houdini is sure to enchant aspiring magicians, offbeat history buffs and anyone who, in our own straitened times, appreciates a good rag-to-riches taleandquot;
andmdash;New York Times
andquot;Period photographs from newspapers, personal collections, advertising flyers, and other sources alternate with full-page color artwork to create a rich, engaging tableau. While there are several excellent biographies of Houdini available...this one is a solid addition.andquot;
andmdash;School Library Journal, starred review
andquot;A well-rounded addition to the childrenandrsquo;s bookshelf about the multifaceted man.andquot;
2012 Orbis Pictus Recommended book
2012 Norman A. Sugarman Childrenandrsquo;s Biography Award andndash; Honor book
Victor idolizes Harry Houdini so much that he locks himself inside his grandmother's trunk. But while Houdini finds his way out of such situations in seconds, Victor has to be let out of the trunk. Then one day he meets Houdini, and begs him to share the tricks of his trade. Houdini gives Victor a mysterious locked box. It takes years for Victor to discover its contents, and find a way out of the trunk in seconds. Illustrations.
About the Author
Brian Selznick also wrote and illustrated The Boy of a Thousand Faces. Among the books he has illustrated are The Doll People by Ann M. Martin and Laura Godwin and Frindle by Andrew Clements, which won the Christopher Award. Mr. Selznick lives in Brooklyn, New York.
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