rating: 4 of 5 stars
I just finished this last night. Great book, I think I might have enjoyed it more than "Howl's Moving Castle". But my memory of that book was spoiled by the stupid "anime" movie done of it a few years ago. blech. I love most of DW Jones' stories and this one has all the good stuff. Good characters, magic, hidden rooms, magic, castles, magic, bad guys.... magic. I love Calcifer the fire demon. I wish he'd had a bigger part here, but that little dog, Waif, makes up for him. Magic dog! Ooooo!
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My own home feels very much like the house in this story. I constantly walk from one room into another and SWEAR it was my bedroom, or our living room, last time I saw it. But now it has become a playroom or babydoll graveyard. If I turn around three times to the left and hop back into the room, sideways, the room has transformed into a gymnasium, with trampoline and parallel bars. Creepy. And, late at night, when the house is quiet and I am working in my studio... a piercing wail echoes from the baby monitor. I run down the stairs, turn left, left again, sideways, leap up the kitchen steps, vault over the coffee table, stumble through the library, slide through the weird door and round wall, hairpin left, trip up the high, steep stairs, fumble with the baby gate, sneek into the inner sanctum and, pant-pant, baby has fallen back to sleep.