`If you cannot make gold by the end of the century, the King said to Spinifex, `you're finished'. Gold! For as long as the castle had stood, alchemists had struggled to make gold from the simple elements of the earth. And for as long as the castle stood they had failed. Then comes the greedy, ambitious Spinifex, who promises the king riches and glory beyond his wildest dreams. Arthur, the alchemist's young apprentice, cannot see the point - after all gold cannot make you happy, heal the sick, or make people love you - and he watches in amazement as the experiments grow more elaborate and fantastic. As time ticks on Spinifex becomes a man obsessed, plundering the country for more gold to aid his experiments, even tearing the rings from people's fingers. Then, as the Millennium approaches, Spinifex constructs his last great experiment - a monstrous machine stretching up from the cellar through the castle to the roof. But the great gold-making machine only suceeds in destroying its creator, leaving just one tiny nugget of gold. However, gold of another kind floods the castle - glorious sunlight rains down on the kingdom, dispelling darkness and gloom forever. As for Arthur, he takes
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Long ago in a kingdom far away, Spinifix, the king's alchemist, labored in the dank cellar of the castle to find the secret of turning base metals into gold. The king had promised to share the wealth with Spinifix if he could produce gold before the Millenium. As the Millenium approached, Spinifix became obsessed with his quest for gold. Meanwhile, his young apprentice tried to open Spinifix's eyes to the richness of their kingdom--fields of golden flowers, goldfish in the rivers, the burnished orange sun--to no avail. The young apprentice knows that true gold--and the happiness it brings--lies within one's heart. With illustrations lush with the intricate detail that has become his trademark, Colin Thompson's fans will delight in searching out the critters and graphic surprises hidden no the pages of this medieval fantasy tale.From the Back Cover:
"Children will have their eyes fill--and thoughts provoked--on every page of amusing details and visual pranks."--Kirkus Reviews on How to Live ForeverI
"A fantasy of exploration in exquisite, complicated illustration--Look very carefully--great richness here."--The New York Times Book Review on Looking for Atlantis
"The one's a crowd-pleaser." Publishers Weekly on The Tower to the Sun
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