Review: Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones

Howl's Moving CastleIn the land of Ingary, where seven league boots and cloaks of invisibility do exist, Sophie Hatter catches the unwelcome attention of the Witch of the Waste and is put under a spell. Deciding she has nothing more to lose, she makes her way to the moving castle that hovers on the hills above Market Chipping. But the castle belongs to the dreaded Wizard Howl whose appetite, they say, is satisfied only by the souls of young girls… There she meets Michael, Howl’s apprentice, and Calcifer the Fire Demon, with whom she agrees a pact. But Sophie isn’t the only one under a curse – her entanglements with Calcifer, Howl, and Michael, and her quest to break her curse is both gripping – and howlingly funny!

I hate to admit that while I'm usually a book before movie person, what made me want to read this was the Hayao Miyazaki movie, that my boyfriend made me watch. I actually did love this book so much, despite the fact that it's a little bit more dated than most of my other books, I did love it. I also want to point out that there are differences between book and movie, so if you've already seen or read one of them you'll enjoy the other.

What I really enjoyed in this book is the clever characters, I loved Sophie who really dos fit into her role as an old woman even though she is actually just a young lady, she has a fantastic 'take no prisoners' attitude that adds a lot of comic relief. Howl is also a really funny character who can either be a swoon-worthy hero or a typical drama-queen, sometimes even both. I love the interactions between these characters and other characters such as Calcifer and Michael.

The story is also original, Diana brings in all sorts of fairy-tale things, such as seven league boots and magic that really creates a great magical atmosphere and she creates a story with so many different stories interwoven. It was obvious that Howl and Sophie would end up together, though I wish there had been more romance as they really were adorable.

If I had one complaint about this book, it would be that there were a lot of stories interwoven and I found it hard to keep track of who was doing what and who was who, the movie simplified it a little. Maybe my mind was just being a little stupid but I struggled to follow some parts of the book.

I cannot wait to read the sequels to this book!

Overall rating: A-

Stand alone/series: First in a series

Paperback Release: March 5th 2009 (Original release 1986)
Publisher: HarperCollins Children
Pages: 302
Book obtained via: Swap

1 comment

  1. I havent read the book but have seen the movie and thats putting me off reading it a little I might give it a god though!


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