The Garden of Abdul Gasazi - Chris Van Allsburg(1979)

          (Caldecott Honor-1980)

       It is not everyday we meet magicians, who turn dogs into ducks. But it is Chris Van Allsburg's world and magic is in the air. 
Magic, Mystery, Mesmerize          
        Alan Mitz is in charge of taking care of the dog, Fritz. But Fritz is not making things easy, as he runs and chews all over the house (except Alan's hat which is protected by Alan). But, things get worse, as Fritz enters the garden of magician Abdul Gasazi during afternoon walk. Alan follows him into the magician's house, only to learn that the magician has turned the dog into duck. The duck (or, dog) snatches Alan's hat and flies away.

       Really? Did the magician change the dog into duck? But, how did the dog showed up at house later? And, how did he get Alan's hat?

             "This amazing grayscale book has astonishing powers to keep the kids engaged till the end"

My comment:
              Do you think children's books need to be colorful to attract and hold the attention of kids? Well, a look through this book will blow away your thoughts. This amazing grayscale book has astonishing powers to keep the kids engaged till the end.

             The three dimensional looking, deep illustrations are classic Chris Van Allsburg's mark and they often give the feel of watching a motion picture. (Check the page where Alan taking nap on the couch and the dog lying under the couch, extending only its snout outside. The snout really looks as it is in a 3D picture.) The narration makes a neat company to the illustrations.

            You can never keep a Allsburg's book with "Done with Reading" mind. There is going to be a last page twist, which is going to haunt your mind, after reading the book. Well, I should say Allsburg is really a magician to hold our minds, with such enchanting stories and glazing illustrations.

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