This is the third of the trilogy beloved by those who first met E. Nesbit through her Five Children and It, and The Phoenix and the Carpet. Enchanting blend of fantasy and realism, as the children come across their old friend, the sand fairy, and, with the fairy's aid, secure a charm with wonderful powers. They go journeying back to the past, and history and ancient peoples come alive. Here's an author who can write magic tales with rare matter-of-faotness and make their children live. The new pictures by J.S. Goodall, unfortunately, have such an old-fashioned quality that they belie the timelessness of the story and give the book a dated look.