Skip to product information
1 of 1

Krabat and the Sorcerer’s Mill (Paperback)

Krabat and the Sorcerer’s Mill (Paperback)

by Otfried Preussler, translated from the German by Anthea Bell

Regular price $13.99
Regular price Sale price $13.99
New Year’s has passed. Twelfth Night is almost here. Krabat, a fourteen-year-old beggar boy dressed up as one of the Three Kings, is traveling from village to village singing carols. One night he has a strange dream in which he is summoned by a faraway voice to go to a mysterious mill—and when he wakes he is irresistibly drawn there. At the mill he finds eleven other boys, all of them, like him, the apprentices of its Master, a powerful sorcerer, as Krabat soon discovers. During the week the boys work ceaselessly grinding grain, but on Friday nights the Master initiates them into the mysteries of the ancient Art of Arts. One day, however, the sounds of church bells and of a passing girl singing an Easter hymn penetrate the boys’ prison: At last a plan is set in motion that will win them their freedom and put an end to the Master’s dark designs.

Now in paperback, Krabat & the Sorcerer’s Mill was one of Cornelia Funke’s most beloved books as a child, and it is easy to see why. It is a wondrous story of magic, black and white; of courage and cunning; and of high adventure.

Additional Book Information

Series: NYRB Kids
ISBN: 9781681377919
Pages: 256
Publication Date:


One of my favorite books.
—Neil Gaiman

As a full-length novel, Krabat and the Sorcerer’s Mill incorporates most elements of the old story, [“The Sorcerer’s Apprentice,”] while establishing regional bona fides with the name and nature of its hero... At that time, a novelist could assume certain elements of background knowledge that are less likely to be known today, particularly by English-speaking children...but it is not necessary for them to appreciate the powerful themes at work here.
—Meghan Cox Gurdon, The Wall Street Journal

In Preussler's masterpiece, the terror is real, the love sweet, and the suspense twisted tight.
—J. Alison James

Like many of the classic children's books being reissued by New York Review Books, Krabat & the Sorcerer's Mill by Otfried Preussler has the potential to appeal to readers of various ages: nostalgia-seekers who enjoyed Anthea Bell's excellent translation when it was first published in the 1970s, and young aficionados of fantasy fiction who'll be happy to discover, in teenage hero Krabat, a worthy progenitor to J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter and Christopher Paolini's Eragon. . . . For Krabat, he drew on the folk tales he loved as a child, basing the book on a Wendish legend. But it is Preussler's own storytelling mastery and gift for atmosphere that render this Bildungsroman-meets-Gothic horror both timeless and splendidly, creepily original.
—Emma Garman, Words Without Borders

I have never been disappointed by a New York Review Children’s Book and Krabat & the Sorcerer’s Mill is no exception. . . . Krabat & the Sorcerer’s Mill will delight kids who like adventures, mysteries, and magic. . . . I enjoyed every word of this captivating story.
Kids Lit Review

View full details
  • Shopping for someone else but not sure what to give them? Give them the gift of choice with a New York Review Books Gift Card.

    Gift Cards 
  • A membership for yourself or as a gift for a special reader will promise a year of good reading.

    Join NYRB Classics Book Club 
  • Is there a book that you’d like to see back in print, or that you think we should consider for one of our series? Let us know!

    Tell us about it