In my childhood I read a children's book about a wizard who wakes from a long sleep after he lost to his arch nemesis, an evil wizard. He travels to find his enemy once again to defeat him this time. He teams up with a small boy, who is very adventurous. After a while they meet a girl, who is very insecure. I think the wizard was old, but the children lived in the 90s, or sometime around that, when the story took place.

On their travels to find the 'bad guy', they learn to be less naïve and risk-taking and less insecure, respectively.

In the end they find the evil wizard and during the battle, the wizard notices the other wizard is some sort of mirror image of himself and to defeat him, the good wizard puts himself to sleep again, content that he could teach the children something and did something good.

I read the book around 2005, but I don't know how old the book itself is.

Anyone knows this story? I remember the cover was red and had an drawn image of the wizard. I think the title of the book was also the name of the wizard, but I could be wrong on that one.


I asked OpenAI and it provided me with this answer:

"The Wizard" by Jack Snow is a fantasy novel that was published in 1952. The story follows a wizard named Zim who travels through time and space with a young boy named Tim and a girl named Pam. The wizard is on a quest to defeat an evil sorcerer who has been wreaking havoc in the world, and he is aided by Tim and Pam, who are brave and resourceful companions. As they journey together, Tim and Pam learn valuable lessons about courage and determination, and the wizard discovers that the true enemy he has been seeking is a darker version of himself. The book features elements of adventure and magic, and it has been praised for its fast-paced and engaging storytelling.

It seems to be at least very close to what I could remember, but I can't find anything more about the book.

  • 2
    Is the term "Wizard" pretty solid in your memory? Not a Warlock, Mage, Magician, or Sorcerer?
    – Turbo
    Commented Dec 20, 2022 at 15:11
  • 1
    @Turbo No, that could be anything of the sorts. But it was definitely more of a "Gandalf"-wizard than a "Harry Potter"-wizard
    – Gwobbel
    Commented Dec 20, 2022 at 21:51
  • kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/jean-ure/the-wizard-in-the-woods has some matching aspects (wizard and two children, not well known, red cover with wizard), but no sleeping aspect, and he's young.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Dec 22, 2022 at 12:42
  • 1
    @FuzzyBoots Alas, no. I remember the wizard having a beard and being the only wizard in the book. (Apart from his evil-self.)
    – Gwobbel
    Commented Dec 22, 2022 at 13:48
  • 2
    For information OpenAI doesn't seem to be for answering questions. From what I've read the point is to mash up text from various sources to create a reasonable sounding paragraph that is somewhat related to the prompts. According to Wikipedia Jack Snow didn't write a book called "The Wizard" and none of the books of that name match the criteria.
    – Eric Nolan
    Commented Jan 6, 2023 at 10:04

1 Answer 1


Could the book be "Merlin" by T.A. Barron?

The plot is similar, the name of book is the name of the mage and most covers where red.

  • 1
    How is the plot similar? It's been a while since I read the book, but I remember Merlin in the first book of that series being by himself for most of the time. And a teenager. Are you talking about a later book?
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Dec 19, 2022 at 22:43
  • 1
    Hi, welcome to SF&F. Can you add some details that show how the plot is similar? For example, describe the boy and the girl.
    – DavidW
    Commented Dec 19, 2022 at 22:43
  • 1
    @Illutta As far as I know, the book wasn't part of a series. The wizard wasn't a 'known' wizard either. Thanks for thinking along, though.
    – Gwobbel
    Commented Dec 20, 2022 at 7:58

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