Like "The Garden of Eve" by Going, this is mostly a straightforward realistic book - with a touch of magic. Augie is a 6th-grader living in a gritty New Jersey town; he tries to keep his head down but is tormented by a trio of classmates. He discovers a book of fairy tales in a tiny bookstore in Philadelphia; unusually for him, he begins to read and enjoy it. Meanwhile, his single mother has found a Big Brother for him (a great guy who happens to be gay) and his favorite teacher starts a chorus that he joins - and the bullying continues. The magic comes in the form of the book, which seems to transform itself occasionally, and offers stories that make him reflect, at least so far as an 11-year-old boy is able to, on his own life. Simple and sweet - an appealing urban tale with an uplifting ending.