Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Le balai magique” as Want to Read:
Le balai magique
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Le balai magique

4.26  ·  Rating Details  ·  3,301 Ratings  ·  255 Reviews
"Witches' brooms don't last forever. They grow old, and even the best of them, one day, lose the power of flight.... On very rare occasions, however, a broom can lose its power without warning, and fall, with its passenger, to the earth below ... which is just what happened one cold autumn night many years ago." So begins The Widow's Broom, the gentle, strangely captivatin ...more
Paperback, 28 pages
Published March 31st 1993 by Ecole des loisirs (first published 1992)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Le balai magique, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Le balai magique

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Melki
I absolutely LOVED this book! Contained within these magical pages are an unfortunate witch, a kindly and patient widow, some superstitious neighbors and the most industrious broom since, well, this guy -

description

Truly wonderful!
Ronyell
“The Widow’s Broom” is a haunting story from the great mind of Chris Van Allsburg and it is about how a lonely widow named Minna Shaw finds a friend in a witch’s broom, but is threatened by the villagers to get rid of the broom because the know that it is witch crafted. “The Widow’s Broom” may have some controversial material about witchcraft, but it is a brilliant read for children who love haunting stories.

Chris Van Allsburg makes this story haunting yet memorable at the same time as it detail
...more
David
Oct 09, 2010 David rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: picturebooks
"Witches' brooms don't last forever. They grow old, & even the best of them, one day, lose the power of flight.... On very rare occasions, however, a broom can lose its power without warning, & fall, with its passenger, to the earth below ... which is just what happened one cold autumn night many years ago." So begins The Widow's Broom, the gentle, captivating book by Chris Van Allsburg. One morning the lonely widow Minna Shaw finds a wounded, sky-fallen witch in her vegetable garden. Th ...more
Arlene Allen
I love, love, love how Van Allsburg refrains from making the witch old and ugly. The broom - steals my heart.
Joseph Lapierre
Sep 25, 2011 Joseph Lapierre rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Widow's Broom is about a witch who is one day flying over a woman's house named Minna, who happens to be a widow. The witches broom loses power during mid-flight and she comes crashing down into Minna's garden. The next day during the morning hours Minna finds the fallen witch in her garden and helps her inside so she can heal. The next day comes and the witch is healed and takes off while Minna is still sleeping but leaves her broom behind as she thinks it has no more power. Minna decides t ...more
Kathryn
This is an outstanding picture book, both in story and illustrations. Part of the fun for me was knowing virtually nothing about it (other than seeing the high ratings from other GoodReads members and friends) so I will not include a synopsis in my review (there are many other fine ones to be found, anyway). Instead, I will say that I was utterly captivated and constantly surprised by the twists and turns in this tale. It is a story of kindness, gratitude, fear and prejudice, acceptance and frie ...more
A.J.
Mar 03, 2016 A.J. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This book contains a balanced combination of suspense and humor. The librarian that I am placed with for field experience said that a lot of teachers pull this text when they are working with their classes on inference. It is a great mentor text when beginning to learn how to make predictions.
Jennifer Siddiqui
Such a sweet story about a widow who helps a witch who leaves behind a magical broom. The broom helps the widower with all her housework and proves to be a true friend. A good story about helping those in need.
Lisa
Mar 24, 2012 Lisa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Chris VanAllsburg is pure magic with his illustrations and his edgy stories. In this story, a witch has left her brrom in the garden of a widow, because it can no longer fly. It may not fly, but it is still magic, and soon it becomes the widow's friend and helper. Unfortuantely, the village doesn't like the idea of a broom that is alive, and they decide to destroy it. Luckily, the widow is clever and finds a way to make everything work out as it should. Dark at times, the illustrations are amazi ...more
Shazzer
Mar 13, 2012 Shazzer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: picture-books
After a witch falls out of the sky one day into Widow Shaw's garden, she leaves behind her old broom. The widow discovers the broom is still full of magic, and capable of great things, but her neighbors think the broom is an evil and should be destroyed.

What is it about Van Allsburg? Where does he get these wild ideas that turn into such beautifully strange books? The illustrations are sumptuous and wonderful as always, and the story is as I said, beautifully strange, with a wonderful smile of a
...more
Kaitlyn Corbin
The Widow’s Broom tells the story of a witch whose broom had lost it’s power to fly. The broom and the witch then crash to the ground where the witch finds herself staying with a lady named Minna Shaw until the witch is healed. Another witch brings the first witch home and the broom is left behind with Minna. She soon realizes that the broom is magical and teaches the broom how to play the piano, chop wood, and feed her chickens. Minna’s women neighbors think the broom is helpful but the men are ...more
Matthew Hunter
Van Allsburg's the creator of Jumanji, Zathura, and The Polar Express. He's known to be good at what he does. Even in lesser-known works like The Widow's Broom, he shines.

Van Allsburg's drawings often focus on peripheral or random aspects of a given scene, similar to how photographers crop or decenter pictures for maximum intended effect. There's no color other than black litho-pencil. Your really have to see the images to believe how vibrant a muted color palette can become in the hands of a ma
...more
Rachel Tackett
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kyla Frey
This book is about a witch who falls out of the sky along with her broom and comes tumbling to the ground. A widow finds her in the garden and she lets her come inside to get some rest. At midnight the witch takes off although she leaves her broom behind. The broom turns out to be a magic broom, and it learns to do some simple tasks to help out the widow. A lot of her neighbors thought that the broom was evil, so they set out to get rid of it. What they thought was enough wasn't and the broom st ...more
LesLee Sanders
This book was on our social issues list and I'm going to have to dig deep to understand what the lesson learned and social issue was. It was about a witch's broom that was left behind at a widow's house. The broom began helping her around the house. But, since this broom was magical, some neighbors began thinking it was evil and eventually they destroyed the broom. However, the widow tricked the neighbors living next door into thinking the broom was a ghost, when it actually wasn't destroyed, an ...more
Maddie Sharp
Apr 30, 2014 Maddie Sharp rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tl307
This story is about how a witch’s broom lost its power. A widow found the broom and its owner in her farm so she took them in and cared for them. One night the witch disappeared, but left her broom at the widow’s house. The widow began to use it, but saw no difference between it and a regular broom. One day she heard a noise from the kitchen when she went to check what it was she saw something that was very shocking, the broom was doing her chores on its own. Soon the community heard about this ...more
Leah
The Widow’s Broom is a book about a magical broom and the widow who uses it. In the beginning of the book, a witch crashes in the town of Minna Shaw, a widow. After the witch leaves, her broom remains behind, and begins to help the widow with daily chores. However, Minna Shaw’s neighbors do not approve of her companion. After a bit later, the town burns the broom much to the widow’s demise. What will the widow do without her helper?
The book had a very interesting format. It was vertical rectangl
...more
Lani
Nov 09, 2007 Lani rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: teachers and parents
Shelves: education, kids
I tend to love Chris Van Allsburg's less famous books like this one.

A quirky twist on a Halloween story, my fifth graders LOVED THIS BOOK. I dressed up as a witch and read it to them, and they had so much fun with the idea of a run-away witches' broom.

I also like the different perspective on witches... they're not all bad after all.

Of course the highlight is really Van Allsburg's illustration, but the story stands up on its own.
Viridiana Ortiz
Jun 07, 2016 Viridiana Ortiz rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is about a widow that tended to a witch that fell from a broom that lost its magic. The broom was left at the widow's farm, thus having the widow use it around the house. The broom somehow got his magic back and would help the widow around her farm. Perhaps the broom saw a use in becoming helpful for the widow, thus regaining a bit of magic. Seeing the broom become animated, many neighbors were untrusting toward the broom. Children would bully the broom and the broom would defend itsel ...more
Mitzy Rodriguez
A story about how a witch’s broom lost its power, so when a widow found the broom and its owner in her farm she took them in and cared for them. One night the witch disappeared, but left her broom at the widow’s house. The widow began to use it, but saw no difference between it and a regular broom. One day she heard a noise from the kitchen when she went to check what it was she saw something that was very shocking, the broom was doing her chores on its own. Soon the community heard about this e ...more
Kelly Fulcher
This was a fun story, very playful. It was a very cute story, something that kids can relate to. Kids often find things that they think are great, things that get better and better, but some people think they are bad for them, and try to take them away, just like the widow and her broom. Kids can relate to the story line, and Van Allsburg's child-friendly story is great!
Jennifer Varela
Apr 25, 2014 Jennifer Varela rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: tl-307
This story is about how a witch’s broom lost its power. A widow found the broom and its owner in her farm so she took them in and cared for them. One night the witch disappeared, but left her broom at the widow’s house. The widow began to use it, but saw no difference between it and a regular broom. One day she heard a noise from the kitchen when she went to check what it was she saw something that was very shocking, the broom was doing her chores on its own. Soon the community heard about this ...more
Amber
Apr 08, 2014 Amber rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked the choice of picture color, which was almost like the Sepia filter. I also enjoyed the non-focused pictures, they didn’t necessary always have the faces of the characters all the time either which I found to be very unique. I also liked that the story was about a witch but in a tasteful non-Halloween like way. I feel like most of the stories I’ve read with witches all sound the same but this story had its own twist and quirks to it. Most books portray witches to be evil but this book re ...more
Cindy Sa
Nov 10, 2014 Cindy Sa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is full of black and white, and these pictures are painted by the pencils. Thus, these pictures are very movements and reality. Although I do not why there are so many picture books are painted in black and white, I also can enjoy these black and white papers. There are some white borders in this book. There are still some pumpkins to be used for the borders in this book. They are very beautiful and these pumpkins have lots of relationships between the witch and the broom.
This book is
...more
Stefani Sloma
Witch’s brooms don’t last forever. They get old and eventually can lose their ability to fly. This happens one day and a broom is left at widow Minna Shaw’s home. Minna uses it around her house, and then one day she finds it sweeping by itself. She eventually trains it to do many other tasks, but her neighbors are very superstitious and they are afraid of the broom. They want her to burn it.

I loved this story. It was beautiful with wonderful illustrations. The shadowing in the illustrations alon
...more
Madison Godfrey
A story about how a witch’s broom lost its power, so when a widow found the broom and its owner in her farm she took them in and cared for them. One night the witch disappeared, but left her broom at the widow’s house. The widow began to use it, but saw no difference between it and a regular broom. One day she heard a noise from the kitchen when she went to check what it was she saw something that was very shocking, the broom was doing her chores on its own! Soon the community heard about this e ...more
Tanya W
Loved this "horror story" for kids. He is so creative and we really like all his books with the cool Twilight Zone twists at the end. Dodoo dodoo dodoo dodoo.... Ahhhhh!
Selene Vasquez
Dec 06, 2014 Selene Vasquez rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This story is about a witch who is flying over" Minna's" house (minna is the name of the character) the witch then crashes into her backyard and Minna takes care of her. The next morning the witch leaves leaving her broom behind (thinking it no longer works) Minna decided to keep the broom to do house chores but then quickly realizes the broom is not a normal broom. She gets over her fear and trains the broom to do other task and quickly her neighbors aren't to excited about it. (cont..)

The book
...more
June
Sep 30, 2015 June rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fantasy/witch fans, and discussion of good & evil
Recommended to June by: Peggy?
Shelves: picture-book, witches
I always liked how the widow is rewarded for her kindness and her use of quick wits to save the broom from the male neighbors' fear and beliefs of evil.
Lauren Sharp
Fantasy 1
This book was entertaining. At first the author gives you background of witches and their brooms. When a witch falls from her broom she leaves it with Widow in the country. The Broom comes to life and starts helping the Widow around the house. When neighbors hear and see the broom they call it wicked and decided to take it from the Widow. The widow paints the broom white so that it looks like it is a ghost scaring the neighbors so that they leave the area and the broom and the Widow can
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Here Comes the Garbage Barge!
  • The Bicycle Man
  • The Princess and the Pig
  • Mini Mia and Her Darling Uncle
  • Fred Stays With Me!
  • Old Bear
  • The Sandwich Swap
  • Big Red Lollipop
  • Into the Unknown: How Great Explorers Found Their Way by Land, Sea, and Air
  • Ruby Bridges Goes To School: My True Story (Scholastic Reader Level 2)
  • Heckedy Peg
  • Nurse, Soldier, Spy: The Story of Sarah Edmonds, a Civil War Hero
  • Fields of Fury
  • Ruby's Wish
  • The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore
  • Tom
  • Blackout
  • Petite Rouge: A Cajun Red Riding Hood
9685
Chris was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan on June 18, 1949, the second child of Doris Christiansen Van Allsburg and Richard Van Allsburg. His sister Karen was born in 1947.

Chris’s paternal grandfather, Peter, owned and operated a creamery, a place where milk was turned into butter, cream, cottage cheese, and ice cream. It was named East End Creamery and after they bottled the milk (and made the ot
...more
More about Chris Van Allsburg...

Share This Book