Thursday, February 22, 2007

Charmed Life by Diana Wynne Jones

This is the fourth Diana Wynne Jones book (272 pages) that I have read and it is also much better than Hexwood. Maybe because Charmed Life was a lot easier to read, as the language was simple and there were not many complicated names.

Eric and Gwendolen Chant were most unfortunate when their parents died during their family day trip. Then, they were sent to live with their neighbour, Mrs. Sharp. Mrs. Sharp was a certified witch and she was glad to have the children to stay with her. She was also interested in Gwendolen because she was a witch too. Eric, or Cat, as Gwendolen calls him, seems like a normal boy with no magical powers.

Gwendolen was then sent for magic lessons at Mr. Henry Nostrum’s place. He was very proud of her because she’s a very gifted witch and has the potential to rule the world. Well, that was what he told her.

One day, Chrestomanci paid the Chants a visit and invited them to live with him at Chrestomanci Castle. Gwendolen was ecstatic to be going there and it was her who wrote to him in the first place, telling him about her parents’ death. It seemed that Chrestomanci was somehow related to the Chants. Cat was not that excited to go there at all. He would miss Mrs. Sharp terribly.

The young Chants arrive at Chrestomanci Castle to find its surroundings were filled with magic. I like the way Jones described that you could smell magic or feel the magic in the air. I wonder how it’s like to smell magic!

Anyway, Gwendolen expected to be treated like a queen and waited on hand and foot. However, she was thoroughly disappointed when they did not fuss over her like how Mrs. Sharp and Mr. Nostrum did. Furthermore, she was not allowed to have magic lessons with Chrestomanci’s children, Roger and Julia.

I found that things got very interesting when nearing the end of the book. I also believe that this book is the first part of the Chrestomanci series. In other words, this book should be the first book in the Chrestomanci series to be read. The next one to read would be The Lives of Christopher Chant.


  1. i've read Charmed Life during my secondary years. =) Coz i borrowed the entire Chrestomanci series from my friend. it's really nice.

  2. Wow, your friend must be a big fan of Diana Wynne Jones!

  3. yeah. haha. usually fans of Harry Potter would've love Diana's Chrestomanci series. if they are into witchcraft and fantasy storylines, of course. =)

  4. Ah, yes, it's true. Fantasy stories are so 'in' at the moment.

  5. Hello,
    Its a really nice blog, since i m a book worm. I feel this blog is made for me. Thanks for your posts

    Best Regards
    Eliena Andrews

  6. Hi Eliena, thanks for dropping by! I'm glad you like it. =)

  7. The synopsis is all enough I already wanted to have the book :D :D


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