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Howl's Moving Castle

by Diana Wynne Jones

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Howl's Castle (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
11,664430535 (4.28)1 / 620
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.
  1. 221
    Stardust by Neil Gaiman (DeltaQueen50)
  2. 150
    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. 120
    The Enchanted Forest Chronicles by Patricia C. Wrede (Anonymous user, rosylibrarian)
  4. 131
    Castle in the Air by Diana Wynne Jones (ed.pendragon)
    ed.pendragon: Also features Howl and Sophie
  5. 100
    Dealing with Dragons by Patricia C. Wrede (infiniteletters)
  6. 80
    The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster (LCoale1)
  7. 95
    The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman (ut.tecum.loquerer)
  8. 40
    A Hat Full of Sky by Terry Pratchett (LongDogMom)
    LongDogMom: Similar style of writing - whimsical and magical
  9. 51
    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.
  10. 30
    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)
  11. 20
    The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle (mysimas)
  12. 10
    The Changeling Sea by Patricia A. McKillip (cammykitty)
    cammykitty: sweet romance
  13. 32
    The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner (bell7)
  14. 00
    Heart's Blood by Juliet Marillier (kkisser)
  15. 00
    Tellos, Vol.1 by Todd Dezago (FFortuna)
  16. 11
    Too Many Curses by A. Lee Martinez (SunnySD)
  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. 22
    Uprooted by Naomi Novik (tralliott)
  20. 00
    Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho (lottpoet)

(see all 25 recommendations)

1980s (3)

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Group TopicMessagesLast Message 
 Geeks who love the Classics: Oct-Nov 2021 Group Read61 unread / 61Majel-Susan, December 2021

» See also 620 mentions

English (421)  Spanish (3)  French (3)  All languages (427)
Showing 1-5 of 421 (next | show all)
I tore through this as it was such a cute and magical read ( )
  Readings.of.a.Slinky | Nov 20, 2023 |
A classic fairytale-esque fantasy story. Sophie, the eldest of three sisters, crosses the (wicked) Witch of the Waste and finds herself taking on the appearance of a cranky old lady. With her sisters chasing after their dreams of finding love and having ten children and becoming an apprentice witch and making a fortune, Sophie decides to pack up and set out on her own to either find a cure or die trying.

Along the way she meets the Wizard Howl, his apprentice Michael and his fire demon, Calcifer who live in a Moving Castle and are on the run from the Witch of the Waste as well. When Sophie sees the state of their castle, she takes on the position of housekeeper, all the while looking for how she can break the spell.

I really liked Sophie. She was hilarious. She was cranky and fierce and it was perfect. I loved the way she bosses Michael and Howl and Calcifer around. I enjoyed the magical elements of the story, the seven league boots and the idea of a whole moving castle that has one door that opens to many different places. Howl was vain and petty and spoiled but he was also sweet and kind at times and it was hilarious watching him try to outstubborn Sophie. I liked the friendship between them but I can't really say I understood the romance between them. Or the perception of the romance between them by everyone else. It wasn't particularly romantic in my opinion.

I liked Calcifer and how he kept getting bullied into laying down his head so Sophie or Howl could cook over him. And I liked all the other characters Michael and Martha and Lettie.

An enjoyable fantasy story with imaginative world-building and an interesting cast of characters. 4 stars. ( )
  funstm | Oct 29, 2023 |
I've loved the movie for years, but this is so much better! The characters and plot all make more sense. ( )
  mmparker | Oct 24, 2023 |
The beginning of this story had one of the most interesting first chapters. I loved that it poked fun at other well-known fairytales.
Unfortunately, I did not enjoy the rest as much. I do believe that many would love it, but it just wasn't what I was expecting.

Tropes: This book consistantly brings in tropes from all sorts of fairytales thoughout the story.

Content: nothing to worry about

3 Stars ( )
  libraryofemma | Oct 20, 2023 |
Enjoyed by the kids and the adults. ( )
  battlestara | Oct 4, 2023 |
Showing 1-5 of 421 (next | show all)

» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Diana Wynne Jonesprimary authorall editionscalculated
Atherton, KristinNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Craig, DanCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rocco, JohnCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sessions, JohnNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Smith, Jos. A.Cover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sterlin, JennyNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stevens, TimIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stimpson, TomCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wyatt, DavidIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Zakris, PaulCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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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.
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)
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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This record is for the book, not the movie. Please do not combine this with the movie or the DVD.
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Wikipedia in English


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.

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Average: (4.28)
0.5 1
1 15
1.5 3
2 71
2.5 27
3 355
3.5 112
4 1060
4.5 144
5 1516

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