Friday, August 17, 2012

Review: Howl's Moving Castle

Howl's Moving Castle
Diana Wynne Jones
Publish Date: August 1, 2001
Greenwillow Books
Borrowed from Megan
Reviewed by Rachael

In which a witch bewitched the hatter's daughter - and then some....

Sophie lived in the town of Market Chipping, which was in Ingary, a land in which anything could happen, and often did - especially when the Witch of the Waste got her dander up. Which was often.

As her younger sisters set out to seek their fortunes, Sophie stayed in her father's hat shop. Which proved most unadventurous, until the Witch of the Waste came in to buy a bonnet, but was not pleased. Which is why she turned Sophie into an old lady. Which was spiteful witchery.

Now Sophie must seek her own fortune. Which means striking a bargain with the lecherous Wizard Howl. Which means entering his ever-moving castle, taming a blue fire-demon, and meeting the Witch of the Waste head-on. Which was more than Sophie bargained for....-Goodreads


This was our book club selection for July. This isn't "my" genre of YA (the combo of fantasy and magic is not usually a winner with me), but it is one of the things I love about our book club, the genres change each month and it helps keep everyone interested and coming back for more. We have some YA Fantasy lovers in the group and it's always fun to see people excited about a book, even if you don't love it.  I didn't finish in time for our discussion, but hearing other people talk about the book (and movie) made me want to finish.

The characters in the book were interesting, as was the world that was created around the Moving Castle. The beginning of the book was slow (and the paperback version I read had over 400 pages so a slow beginning is sort of a mood killer for me) but things picked up toward the end and I'm glad I finished. I think I may have skimmed a bit too much in the middle because in the final chapters I found myself confusing some of the characters. I've heard great things about the anime movie version of the book, but have yet to get my hands on a copy as of yet. This probably should happen, I've heard there are several deviations from the book that I can see as improvements and I'm excited to see how that plays out. I've never watched anime, but it sounds like this is an excellent movie to start with from what other people have told me.

Have you read Howl's Moving Castle and/or seen the movie?
 
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