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witch week by diana wynne jones
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Title:witch week
Authors:diana wynne jones
Info:Greenwillow (1982), Edition: First, Hardcover, 192 pages
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Witch Week by Diana Wynne Jones (1982)



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Showing 1-5 of 31 (next | show all)
This was my first DWJ book. I read it because I really liked Harry Potter and was searching for something in a similar vein. I had to be younger than ten at the time. My sister Erin pointed it out to me in the library because the cover of this book had kids riding brooms (or mops, etc.) and I immediately became invested in it. This one is compared to the Potter series the most, because hey, witches in boarding school? But there are a few notable differences.

1) All the kids hate each other. There is no Golden Trio bullshit. They're all unhappy and annoyed by everyone else, and it is hilarious.

2) This predates Harry by at least a decade.

3) Larwood House (likely a spin-off of Jane Eyre's Lowood) is an unhappy place to be. No Great Hall, no cheerful Headmaster.

4) Witchcraft is a bad thing here. However, almost all of the students are witches. Isn't THAT a dilemma.

On top of that the plot is just so much more complex, particularly around the end, which is sort of Diana's trademark. Endings you aren't expecting that have more than one level to them, and, I've noticed, she tends to culminate things with very large groups present all talking at once, with this book as no exception.

Oh yes, and Christopher Chant/Chrestomanci? Is still the best ever. ( )
  likecymbeline | Apr 1, 2017 |
One of the very best of Jones' books that I have read. Nominally part of the Chrestomanci series, but Chrestomanci's appearance, while crucial, is brief. The introductory chapter, with each student introduced by their journal entries, is a bravura opening. I want to go back and read the first chapter again, to better connect the characters with their first entries.

The grimness of the school made it hard for me to decide whether I should identify more with Charles Morgan, Nan Pilgrim, or Brian Wentworth. On the other hand, some parts were so hilarious that I laughed out loud. ( )
  themulhern | Mar 20, 2017 |
This book is much more juvenile-seeming that others in this series... in an alternate world, witchcraft is still a crime punished by burning, and when a student at a boarding school makes an anonymous accusation that "someone in the class is a witch" the consequences could be dire... finally, the mysterious enchanter known as Chrestomanci has to save the day in a dramatic deus-ex-machina...
Does a good job with making all of it's rather unappealing characters (the kids at the boarding school are a quite diverse bunch of brats, dorks, bullies and etc...) gradually appear deserving of understanding and sympathy... a bit of a heavy-handed message of tolerance... ( )
  AltheaAnn | Feb 9, 2016 |
It was interesting but it's not my favorite of the Chrestomanica series. ( )
  LopiCake | Mar 25, 2015 |
This was such a great read! ( )
  rjc146 | Jan 23, 2015 |
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» Add other authors (12 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Diana Wynne Jonesprimary authorall editionscalculated
IonicusCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Newbold, GregCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stevens, TimIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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First words
The note said: someone in this class is a witch.
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Disambiguation notice
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Book description
Haiku summary
A parallel world
where they persecute witches
and children aren't safe.

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0006755178, Paperback)

Someone in 6B is a witch. And, in the alternate reality described in Diana Wynne Jones's Witch Week, that's not at all a good thing to be. Jones plunks her readers directly into the life of Larwood House, a school in a present-day England that's a lot like the world we know, except for one major difference: witches are everywhere, and they are ruthlessly hunted by inquisitors. With witty, erudite writing, Jones tells of the adventures of the class of 6B as they set about to discover who among them is a witch. Clearly it's not the popular Simon or the perfect Theresa. Could it be fat Nan or sluggish Charles? Mysterious Nirupam or shifty-eyed Brian? By the climax of the book (which, by the way, involves saving the world), being a witch has become a badge of honor rather than a mark of shame.

Jones skillfully and seamlessly switches from one point of view to another, creating a comic companion piece to Lord of the Flies as she shows with perfect understanding the way children torment each other--and save each other. She neatly interweaves the dramatic plot with knowing descriptions of school life, as when lumpen Nan warily observes the popular girls: "At lessons, she discovered that Theresa and her friends had started a new craze. That was a bad sign. They were always more than usually pleased with themselves at the start of a craze... The craze was white knitting, white and clean and fluffy, which you kept wrapped in a towel so that it would stay clean. The classroom filled with mutters of, 'Two purl, one plain, twist two....'" Witch Week is a hugely entertaining book that doesn't condescendingly beat children over the head with its humane message of acceptance. --Claire Dederer

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:00:35 -0400)

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When a teacher at an English boarding school finds a note on his desk accusing someone in the class of being a witch, magical things begin to happen and an Inquisitor is summoned.

(summary from another edition)

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