Trick number two by Nick Bland and Stephen Michael King
Patience is the overwhelming theme of this tale as three little wizards try to develop their own magic skills, asking the Wise Old Wizard to pass on his knowledge. He does but not in a way that satisfies two of them, patience being a virtue that needs to be practised.
In this very funny tale the Wise Old Wizard gives his three proteges a piece of string and tells them it needs to be planted, watered and cared for until spring.
Impatience is at the heart of the next stage as two of the trainee wizards pull up their pieces of string to make use of it in another way.
Wizard Blue uses his piece of string to tie up his shoes and marches away. In autumn, Wizard Yellow can wait no longer and pulls up her piece of string to fix her kite. Only Wizard Red stays with his string. He patiently waits through the winter rain, the wind and snow until spring comes around. The string sprouts a bud and that bud turns into a red balloon. Now that Trick Number One has been made his, his patience is rewarded as the Wise Old Wizard shows him Trick Number Two.
In easy to read rhyming pairs of lines, children will eagerly predict the rhyming word, offering many suggestions as the story is read aloud. They will rail at the impatience shown by the first two, congratulating the patience shown by Wizard Red as he tends his piece of string.
Illustrations by King are always a delight and the detail shown will intrigue readers as their eyes skim across the pages with all of its interesting variety.
Themes: Patience, Perseverance, Seasons.