Elizabeth Recommends HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE

Eighth grader Elizabeth Jung from Hillsboro, Oregon recommends. . .

Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones

A moving castle, green slime, and a talking fire?! If you’re interested or curious what that was about then you should read Howl’s Moving Castle. I love this book and it is my all time favorite because it has a perfect blend of magic, romance, adventure, and a grandma going on a rampage. I mean if it wasn’t as good as I said it was, then would it have turned into a movie produced by Studio Ghibli (who also produced Spirited Away, My Neighbor Totoro, and Ponyo)? Diana Wynne Jones(the author) has written a book you will fall in love with and won’t be able to put down.

Howl’s Moving Castle is about Sophie Hatter who is the eldest so she’s supposed to have all the misfortune out of her beautiful sisters (How unfair is that?!). So because of that she looks down on herself and doesn’t expect anything good happen to her. But soon she finds herself in the worst luck ever or is it at the moment? She pisses off the Witch of the Waste which got her turned into a old grandma! Sophie’s not happy but wonders if it actually suits her (Not Good!!!). So she goes to find The Great Wizard Howl (who’s rumored to feast on young ladies hearts! Eww~). So where do you find Wizard Howl? In his moving castle of course! When she catches up with it, she finds Howl, Michael, and Calcifer, a talking fire demon! But then she realizes she can’t talk about the curse to anyone; luckily, Calcifer already knows she’s under a curse so he strikes a deal with her to free each other. She hires herself as their cleaning lady making the unbelievably dirty castle into a cleaner place. While she’s there she finds she shouldn’t believe rumors and sees Howl’s moments nobody’s ever seen before (Which isn’t the quietest or cleanest). Though living there with Howl doesn’t mean it’s peaceful from spying on, green slime, yelling, cutting up suits, and exploiting each other. One after another but Sophie notices she’s grown more confident and experiencing things in her life she never would have if she never turned into a grandma (Also she turned a lot more nosy. Read the book then you’ll know). But that’s not the end of it.

Howl’s own curse is coming to nip him back in the butt with the package of the Witch of the Waste trying to have his heart. Sophie tries to help and she’s helping all right– just the wrong thing! She helps the curse happen which wasn’t intended. So she’s annoyed and jealous. The result of that?…a rampage and glares (scary…)! In the end an unexpected result happens to find out you’ll have to read the book.

The summary should have made you want to read the book right away but if it hasn’t convinced you yet then I’ll tell you another reason why I like it. Anyway,  reason #1 is obviously the characters. The characters are fun and stubborn. Even if they were difficult to handle, it feels like you can endure that and just be their friends. They feel like a really good friend you know you can trust, but still have loads of fun and adventures with (Yay!). The person I would most want to be friends with would be Sophie as a grandma (I mean she would be the coolest grandma ever!). Being realistic is part of a good character too, right? So these guys don’t seem fake because obviously everyone has their quirks and so do they. Diana Wynne Jones has captured that perfectly (including Howl who is perfect……not!).

This is why I think you should read this book Howl’s Moving Castle. If you need a blend of magic, romance, and adventure then this book is perfect for you. The plot and characters that just take you into the story making it almost impossible to take your eyes off it.  (Unless of course someone takes the book away from you). Sophie’s and Howl’s magic just clash, making the story fun and mischievous in many ways.  Also, don’t forget Calcifer who makes the story special too! This book is a book you will always go back to read over and over and won’t be able to forget!

~~~

Several of Elizabeth’s classmates have also allowed us to publish reviews of what they’re currently reading.  And for recommendations from kids of all ages, check out our Kids Recommend section.

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One Response to Elizabeth Recommends HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE

  1. Erin says:

    Diana Wynne Jones is a fabulous author, and this is my absolute favorite of all of her books. I think I read it first in middle school, and I’ve re-read it periodically since.

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