Business: I'm moving on to the Intense Debate commenting system today. It will get about a week like Disqus. I was completely disgusted with Disqus in the end. Friday I couldn't get it to let me comment at all. So sorry about not commenting. FYI: Now that I'm switching systems, I've lost all the comments that were made on Disqus. UPDATE: You'll need to click on the "links to this post" to comment. I'll see if I can't fix that. *rolls eyes*
Up for today: Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones--requested by Mary Kay.
Why I bought it? I bought this a few years ago for my daughter from the recommendations of several nieces who loved it and thought she would. They said I should read it. I didn't at the time. Silly me.
Synopsis/Set up: In Ingary, the Witch of the Waste turns Sophie Hatter into an old woman. Sophie sets off to make her fortune and ends up working for the mysterious Wizard Howl in his moving castle. She makes a deal with the fire demon, Calcifer, that he will break the spell on her if she gets Howl to free him.
What I thought? This book is so charming and clever and witty. I loved it and couldn't put it down. All of the characters are 3 dimensional. Sophie is wonderful. I adore her. A friend described Howl as being like the Scarlet Pimpernel (but actually vain). I love that description. There's more depth to him than you see at first which is lovely to discover as you read. The book reminded me of Harry Potter at times (but this one came before HP). It's incredibly creative.
My Rating: ****1/2 out of 5. I think I may have given this 5 stars on Goodreads. It was very close for me.
My Daughter's Rating: **** out of 5, She said she saw the movie first and kept expecting to book to be as light hearted as the movie and there were a lot more serious moments. She loves the movie and has seen it over and over. I still haven't watched it, and she is giving me a hard time about it. Yeah. Yeah. Eventually.
Cleanness Score: 2 out of 10, You're pretty safe with this one, but there was a little mild language and a couple sort of adult things like drinking that I'm not sure little kids would get. That said. I wouldn't have a problem with my 10 year old reading it.
There are two companion books/sequels Castle in the Air and House of Many Ways. I read both and enjoyed them immensely.