The Three Golden Keys

Full-color pictures by the author

All ages / 64 pages
ISBN: 0-374-37525-9 / $23.00
Frances Foster Books
Farrar, Straus and Giroux

New York Times Book Review Best Illustrated Book of the Year

A man in a hot-air balloon, blown off course in a violent storm, lands in the city of his youth. He finds the way to his old home, but the house is dark, with three rusty padlocks on the door. A black cat with eyes of fire appears and leads him through Prague's silent streets in search of the three golden keys that will unlock the door to his past.

In this reissue of one of his most personal works, Peter Sís recaptures the wonder of his own lost childhood in Prague and celebrates the city's cultural heritage, reborn after forty-five years of Communist rule. "With his stunning artwork and resonant, enigmatic prose, Sís . . . fashions an entrancing, mystical allegory about the complicated history of his native Prague . . . A treasure." --Publishers Weekly, starred reviews

"The fairy-tale capital [Prague] has found its artist in Peter Sís. His brilliant homage to his hometown is at once charming and grave, filled with countless nuances and details that only a loving eye will notice."
--The New York Times Book Review

"No one can see memory, of course, but if we could, I suspect it would be as magical and mesmerizing as the images of Prague which . . . Peter Sís has created . . . The late Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, who edited this book shortly before her death, called Sís 'a genius.' Few who see this book will disagree." -- Los Angeles Times Book Review

"With his stunning artwork and resonant enigmatic prose, Sís fashions an entrancing, mystical allegory . . . A treasure." -- Publishers Weekly, starred review

"An astonishingly multilayered labyrinth of history, mischief, beauty, and personal memory . . . this [is] picture book as history lesson, travelogue, and memoir." --Hungry Mind Review

"Sís' pictures are haunting, reminiscent by turns of Piranesi, Ernst and other masters of the slightly bizarre." --The Washington Post Book World

"Exquisite fine-line drawings, with subtle washes . . . A highly original and personal picture book." --Booklist

"A Kafkaesque work that is subtle and emotionally powerful." -- Entertainment Weekly

"The pictures contain marvelous surprises." --USA Today

"A personal journey that is multilayered with images, memories, and pictures . . . with visual and textual subtleties interconnecting with cultural and historical ties." --School Library Journal

Copyright © 2002-2004 Peter Sís
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