E. Nesbit's funny, original story about the pitfalls of having your wishes come true
Edith Nesbit was born in 1858. Her father died when she was only three and so her family moved all over England. Poverty was something she had known first hand, both as a child and as a young married woman with small children. Like the Railway Childrens' Mother she was forced to try and sell her stories and poems to editors.Her first children's book, The Treasure Seekers, was published in 1899. She also wrote Five Children and It but her most famous story is The Railway Children which was first published in 1905 and it hasn't been out of print since. Edith Nesbit was a lady ahead of her time - she cut her hair short which was considered a very bold move in Victorian times and she was a founding member of a group that worked towards improvements in politics and society called The Fabian Society. She died in 1924.
"I love E. Nesbit - I think she is great and I identify with the way that she writes. Her children are very real children and she was quite a groundbreaker in her day" -- JK Rowling "She speaks to the reader, and it's almost as if though you could hear her voice" -- Quentin Blake "This one is definitely my favourite. The story is about five children who find a sand fairy that grants them wishes. But the wishes never turn out like the children imagine. The children had to spend the summer without TV or electronic games because they hadn't been invented. It makes me feel jealous of them, because they spend all day having adventures and the grown-ups don't bother them at all! I recommend this book to all children. If you can't read it yourself, your mum or dad should read it to you" -- Viveak Todd, aged 11 Sunday Express "So what makes these different to any other set of classics? In a moment of inspiration Random House had the bright idea of actually asking Key stage 2 children what extra ingredients they could add to make children want to read. And does it work? Well, put it this way...my 13-year-old daughter announced that she had to read a book over the summer holiday and, without any prompting, spotted The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas...and proceeded to read it! Now, if you knew my 13-year-old daughter, you would realise that this is quite remarkable. She reads texts, blogs and tags by the thousand - but this is the first book she has read since going to high school, so all hail Vintage Classics!" National Association for the Teaching of English