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Howl's Moving Castle (Howl's…
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Howl's Moving Castle (Howl's Castle) (original 1986; edition 2012)

by Diana Wynne Jones

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
6,758271547 (4.3)427
Member:calmclam
Title:Howl's Moving Castle (Howl's Castle)
Authors:Diana Wynne Jones
Info:Greenwillow Books (2012), Kindle Edition, 448 pages
Collections:Kindle
Rating:*****
Tags:kindle: children's

Work details

Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones (1986)

  1. 141
    Stardust by Neil Gaiman (DeltaQueen50)
  2. 130
    House of Many Ways by Diana Wynne Jones (ed.pendragon)
    ed.pendragon: Another in the same series featuring Howl and Sophie Pendragon (nee Hatter)
  3. 110
    The Enchanted Forest Chronicles by Patricia C. Wrede (Anonymous user, rosylibrarian)
  4. 100
    Castle in the Air by Diana Wynne Jones (ed.pendragon)
    ed.pendragon: Also features Howl and Sophie
  5. 90
    Dealing with Dragons by Patricia C. Wrede (infiniteletters)
  6. 50
    The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster (LCoale1)
  7. 50
    The Enchanted Castle by E. Nesbit (ed.pendragon)
    ed.pendragon: Despite a castle being in the titles of both books, each novel is really about the human stories contained within and the characters' interaction with the magic they come in contact with.
  8. 73
    The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman (ut.tecum.loquerer)
  9. 30
    A Hat Full of Sky by Terry Pratchett (LongDogMom)
    LongDogMom: Similar style of writing - whimsical and magical
  10. 30
    The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner (bell7)
  11. 20
    Flora Segunda: Being the Magickal Mishaps of a Girl of Spirit, Her Glass-Gazing Sidekick, Two Ominous Butlers (One Blue), a House with Eleven Thousand Rooms, and a Red Dog by Ysabeau S. Wilce (foggidawn)
  12. 10
    Too Many Curses by A. Lee Martinez (SunnySD)
  13. 10
    The Changeling Sea by Patricia A. McKillip (cammykitty)
    cammykitty: sweet romance
  14. 00
    Heart's Blood by Juliet Marillier (kkisser)
  15. 00
    The Chocolatier's Wife by Cindy Lynn Speer (LongDogMom)
    LongDogMom: Although Howl's Moving Castle is considered YA, this book reminded me of it in the whimsical and quirky way the story is written and the romance and magic involved. Both books are delightful!
  16. 00
    Tellos, Vol.1 by Todd Dezago (FFortuna)
  17. 00
    Ithanalin's Restoration by Lawrence Watt-Evans (DWWilkin)
    DWWilkin: When reading these books it seems that they have a great deal that would be make each compliment the other.
  18. 11
    Jinx by Sage Blackwood (LongDogMom)
    LongDogMom: Similar in style and tone, both books are filled with magic and wizards, spells and rumors about mysterious and dangerous beings to be avoided.
  19. 16
    The Fairy Godmother by Mercedes Lackey (Anonymous user)
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» See also 427 mentions

English (267)  French (2)  Spanish (1)  Finnish (1)  All languages (271)
Showing 1-5 of 267 (next | show all)
I am going to be honest I saw the anime first and noticed that it was based on a book and that's how I decided to read the book. Although I can honestly say the book is much better than the movie. The movie tones down Howl and Sophie's unfavorable personality traits and makes the film much more lighthearted than the book.

The book starts out with some introductory to Ingary, the Hatter family, and the rumors about Howl and the Witch of the Waste. Sophie has what I like to refer to as First Child Syndrome. She basically functions as a third parent for her two younger sisters and is terrified of failing because she has been told that if she were to set out and seek her fortune she will not succeed. The book references a lot of fairy tale tropes only to turn them on their head.

Through a series of events Sophie gets turned into an old woman by the Witch of the Waste. Deciding that it really can't get any worse Sophie sets out to seek her fortune and adventure. She ends up finding the moving castle of the "evil" Wizard Howl and there she meets his fire demon Calcifer and strikes a deal with him. If she can free him from the contract he has made with Howl he will return her to normal. Sophie then inserts herself into the lives of the occupants of the moving castle has "Grandma Sophie" the cleaning lady. She befriends Michael (Markl in the movie) Howl's teenage assistant and student who is responsible for the majority of the work "Wizard Howl" does and she has an odd love-hate relationship with the Wizard Howl himself. Throughout the book Sophie learns that the "castle" is actually in three places at once and it's all to help Howl avoid the Witch of the Waste and her curse she put on him because "hell hath no fury like a woman scorned".

So now Sophie has a deadline, free Calcifer and Howl from their contract before the Witch of the Waste's curse takes effect and she also has to deal with her sister's Martha and Lettie who have switched places and are both being called Lettie for the time being and one sister is in love with Michael and Howl is trying to capture the heart of the other, but that Lettie is in love with a man who keeps turning into different dogs and can't seem to stay human. And then there's the fact Sophie learns she herself has magic and is a powerful witch. What's poor Sophie going to do? ( )
1 vote oxlabyrinthxo | Jul 10, 2016 |
The eldest sister of three never comes to much in the country of Ingarry, but Sophie challenges tradition when she encounters a curse at the hands of the Witch of the Waste and sets off in search of help from the Wizard Howl and his fire demon, Calcifer. If you've seen the movie, the story will be familiar, but with different twists and a deeper plot. And its worth listening to the audiobook--the reader does a fantastic Welsh accent for Howl.
  LibraryGirl11 | Jul 5, 2016 |
Enchanting in everyway possible. I'd seen the Miyazaki movie before listening to Jenny Stedin's excellent narration of the audiobook (Audible) so I found myself visualizing the characters as Japanese anime. Since the storyline in the movie is based very loosely on the book I'd recommend enjoying both versions of this delightful fantasy. ( )
  wandaly | Jun 30, 2016 |
I know a movie has been made of this but I haven't seen it and am glad I haven't.

Sophie is the oldest of three sisters who live in the Market Chipping in Ingary, a magical land. When her father passes away the two younger sisters are sent off to seek their fortunes, but Sophie stays at her father's hat shop. She makes the hats and pretty much runs the business while her step-mother is busy elsewhere.

When the Witch of the Waste comes in to buy a hat, Sophie can not seem to please her and winds up being turned into an old woman by the wicked witch. Sophie feels that it is now time for her to seek her own fortune and due to the magic spell she is under, the only solution is to seek a bargain with the Wizard Howl who lives in a moving castle.

Howl has a bad reputation of being lecherous, eating young girls up after breaking their hearts. He is elusive and evil. Sophie is determined and manages to enter his constantly moving castle in an effort to get help from Howl. What she finds there is a fire-demon, Howl's assistant and a place in need of a good cleaning and organizing. She takes on dealing with all this while trying to figure out what she is going to do.

One hinderance is that being the oldest she is destined to make bad decisions. With this in mind she feels that when she makes a decision that will always be wrong. Along the way she finds different and that she also has magic of her own.

The characters are delightful and the story has plenty of action, humour and moves at a good clip. Goodread for children and adults.
  ChazziFrazz | Jun 23, 2016 |
Much more witty than the movie--but a little less romantic.

The story is more indepth, includes more flourishes and interesting -ism's that are typical of Jones' wonderful style. No faults here. Just a very little bit sad where it relates to our own lives... So while lacking Miyazaki, this book is much more poignant.

... WEIRD. Love story, Magical, a movie was made out of it, that was considerably more romantic. She's cursed by this witch because … I dunno, she made her an ugly hat, or has magic, or something, and the wizard howl who hops through different dimensions, and the witch is evil, and the fire talks (was voiced by Billy Crystal in the American version of the movie) and... there WAS a happy ending for the couple. Pretty dark. ( )
  knotbox | Jun 9, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 267 (next | show all)

» Add other authors (11 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Diana Wynne Jonesprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Craig, DanCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sessions, JohnNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Smith, Jos. A.Cover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sterlin, JennyNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stevens, TimIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wyatt, DavidIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Dedication
This one is for Stephen
The idea for this book was suggested by a boy
in a school I was visiting, who asked me to
write a book called The Moving Castle.
I wrote down his name, and put it in such a safe
place, that I have been unable to find it ever since.
I would like to thank him very much.
First words
In the land of Ingary where such things as seven-league boots and cloaks of invisibility really exist, it is quite a misfortune to be born the eldest of three. Everyone knows you are the one who will fail first, and worse, if the three of you set out to seek your fortunes.
Quotations
She was not even the child of a poor woodcutter, which might have given her some chance of success! Her parents were well to do and kept a ladies' hat shop in the prosperous town of Market Chipping. -- Chapter 1 (p.1)
It was odd. As a girl, Sophie would have shriveled with embarrassment at the way she was behaving. As an old woman, she did not mind what she did or said. She found that a great relief.  -- Chapter 5 (p.83)
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
This record is for the book, not the movie. Please do not combine this with the movie or the DVD.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 006441034X, Mass Market Paperback)

In the land of Ingary, such things as spells, invisible cloaks, and seven-league boots were everyday things. The Witch of the Waste was another matter.

After fifty years of quiet, it was rumored that the Witch was about to terrorize the country again. So when a moving black castle, blowing dark smoke from its four thin turrets, appeared on the horizon, everyone thought it was the Witch. The castle, however, belonged to Wizard Howl, who, it was said, liked to suck the souls of young girls.

The Hatter sisters--Sophie, Lettie, and Martha--and all the other girls were warned not to venture into the streets alone. But that was only the beginning.

In this giant jigsaw puzzle of a fantasy, people and things are never quite what they seem. Destinies are intertwined, identities exchanged, lovers confused. The Witch has placed a spell on Howl. Does the clue to breaking it lie in a famous poem? And what will happen to Sophie Hatter when she enters Howl's castle?

Diana Wynne Jones's entrancing fantasy is filled with surprises at every turn, but when the final stormy duel between the Witch and the Wizard is finished, all the pieces fall magically into place.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:05 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Eldest of three sisters in a land where it is considered to be a misfortune, Sophie is resigned to her fate as a hat shop apprentice until a witch turns her into an old woman and she finds herself in the castle of the greatly feared wizard Howl.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 9 descriptions

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