The Dark Lord of Derkholm by Diana Wynne Jones

The Dark Lord of Derkholm by Diana Wynne JonesThe Lord of Derkholm by Diana Wynne Jones
Series: Derkholm #1
Genre: Fantasy
Release Date: August 29, 2013
Publisher: HarperTrophy
Source: Publisher
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: three-stars

A humorous fantasy from Diana Wynne Jones. In a world next door to ours, the tourist industry is devastating the population by its desire to experience all the fantasy cliches - Dark Lords, impoverished villages, dragons etc. The Head of the University resolves to shut the tours down; the only problem being the ruthless tour-master - and his all-powerful demons. To save them all, the incompetent wizard Derk is appointed as Dark Lord in the hope that he will ruin the tours, and sure enough proceeds to fail at everything due to his general uselessness. But can failing at everything lead to a win this time?

So…this is a weird one. Although it’s, I assume, a children’s novel, I think in many ways this book will appeal far more to adults. Those with an interest in fantasy fiction will particularly enjoy the way in which the novel parodies some of the most popular tropes. In the same vein, the humour in this book feels very specific. While definitely not for everyone, I do think most children and many adults would get a kick out of reading The Dark Lord of Derkholm.

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Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones

Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne JonesHowl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones
Series: Howl's Moving Castle #1
Genre: Fantasy
Release Date: April 1986
Publisher: HarperCollins
Source: Bought
Add it: Goodreads
Rating: five-stars

"How about making a bargain with me?" said the demon. "I'll break your spell if you agree to break this contact I'm under."

In the land of Ingary, where seven-league boots and cloaks of invisibility really exist, Sophie Hatter attracts the unwelcome attention of the Witch of the Waste, who puts a curse on her. Determined to make the best of things, Sophie travels to the one place where she might get help - the moving castle which hovers on the nearby hills.

But the castle belongs to the dreaded Wizard Howl whose appetite, they say, is satisfied only by the hearts of young girls...

Trying to write a decent review of this book without fizzing over with all the happiness it fills me with is basically impossible, jsyk. This book is a delight; the kind of book that can be read again and again without losing any of its magic. It’s just so wonderful ;______; This is literally the perfect book for when you’re feeling down, or when you just want to chill out or even if you’re feeling good and want a book that’s light and fun. Howl’s Moving Castle is all of those things! Note the enthusiasm here, people, I used an exclamation mark. SERIOUS BUSINESS.

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