The kids from Five Children and It are back, and this time they've discovered a flying carpet! Cyril, Anthea, Robert, Jane, and their baby brother, the Lamb, are playing in the nursery with fireworks when they inadvertently burn the rug. The replacement carpet, a secondhand item of unknown origins, contains a stone egg that falls into the fireplace and miraculously hatches a phoenix. The friendly phoenix explains that the magic carpet can transport the children to any location around the globe — but only three times a day. Fantastic and bizarre events follow, as the children and their new friend undertake local adventures in Edwardian-era London as well as expeditions to a French castle, an Indian bazaar, and a remote desert island. "The magic of the story is still potent," noted Kirkus, "fantasy done in a realistic vein, and enchantment for the imaginative child."