Vocabulary: Magic

The Golem of Prague

Prague was a city of mystery. It was a city of narrow streets and broad desires. It was a city of money, magic, and murder.
It was also a city of hate. The Jews of Prague lived in the ghetto, and they were attacked from all sides. People spread lies. They said that the Jews did magic, that they attacked Christian girls, that they went into churches at night and destroyed the holy body of Christ. The Jews of Prague were poor, and still, people came and threw rocks at their houses, shouted names at them in the street, and refused to sell them food.

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The Nose That Ran Away

On Rise Street in St. Petersburg lived a man called Ivan Jakovlevitch. Ivan was a barber, but not a particularly good one. People always said, ‘Be careful of that Ivan. He makes men bleed.’

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Sleeping Beauty

Far away from our world, there were the Blue Castle and the Red Castle. In the Blue Castle, everything was soft and blue, and Izod was the softest fairy of all. Izod loved her land, and the land loved her. It was a happy place, but at times it was very sad. When one of the High Fairies died, all the people cried for days. Izod cried more than everyone else. She had a big heart, and beautiful wings. They called them her “wings of water”.

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House of Secrets Chapter 4

Xu’s room was a mess. Steve thought his was bad, with jewels and bones and spellbooks everywhere, but at least in his room you could see the floor. Everywhere in her bedroom, there were pieces of paper, old fast food boxes, apple cores, magazines, and polaroids. There was some genuinely nice art on her walls, but the complete mess everywhere else distracted from it.

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House of Secrets Chapter 3

Steve hadn’t been joking. There was a circle of thick candles on the floor, and a table had been placed in the middle, with expensive cloth on top. Elisabeth was impressed. She’d been in professional productions with far worse sets than this.

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House of Secrets Chapter 2

Xu hated lots of things. She hated burnt toast, ugly sweaters, and tiny loud dogs. But more than anything, she hated spiders.
And the attic was full of them.

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House of Secrets Chapter 1

Rosa stared at her renters, and her renters stared back at her. They were all gathered in the living room of her house, sitting on the ancient sofa, looking very annoyed at being there. Xu probably wanted to be outside taking pictures of traffic lights and dogs, and Elisabeth had been loudly rehearsing Macbeth in her bedroom when Rosa called them all down. She didn’t want to know what Steve had been doing, but he looked the same as always, like a naughty child.

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Love is Worth a Bit of Pain

She knew what she was doing was wrong. She had known the moment she saw him. But love didn’t care about what side of a wall you were on, even if she was on the side of the palace gardens and he was stood in the ruined fields.
The war had gone on for years, but it only took a moment for her to lose to his eyes. They stared at her through a hole in the wall. She knew he was from the other side. He had the eyes of the Others, the Enemies. They were so bright that she could see her reflection in them.

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The Beetle and the Boy Chapter 2

Little Mike was my first ever pet. My parents had always said I was too careless for one, but I looked after my stag beetle like he was the most important thing in the world. Once a week, Big Mike came round to visit Little Mike.
‘I think he’s growing bigger,’ he would say. ‘Soon he’ll be as big as you.’

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