Title: Half Magic
Author: Edward Eager
Illustrator: N. M. Bodecker
Approximate reading level: 5th grade
Main characters: Siblings Jane, Mark, Katherine, and Martha
Summary: The four children are out on a summer day, looking for adventure, when Jane finds (what she thinks is) a nickel on the sidewalk. When she later makes a wish, it comes true--but only halfway. After thinking long and hard all afternoon and evening, she comes to the conclusion that it was not a nickel, but a magic charm. Unfortunately by this time, her mother has borrowed the nickel from her dresser for bus fare. But thankfully, something strange happens while her mother is visiting family and she does not spend the nickel. What follows is a series of adventures as the children take turns wishing and try to double wish so they will get what they actually want when it only half comes true.
Review: I think this book is well-written. Magic is involved, but no harmful magic. The adventures are interesting and do not turn out perfectly--even magic can't fix everything, even when the children try to wish double so that half of the wish will be what they actually want. They use the magic to help others as well as themselves.