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The Chronicles of Crestomanci Volume I: Charmed Life & The Lives of Christopher Chant

The Chronicles of Chrestomanci, Volume I includes Charmed Life and The Lives of Christopher Chant, the first two novels in Diana Wynne Jones’ fantasy series.

Neither Cat or Christopher Chant can perform even the simplest of spells – they’ve given up the idea of being good at magic.

So, when they’re introduced to situations that greatly need it – what will they do?

Cat relies on his sister – strong in magical abilities and personality – as they enter the Chrestomanci’s castle as wards and find little to like there.

Christopher yearns to please his uncle as his nighttime childhood jaunts to other worlds appear to be useful, if secretive, to him.

Both are involved in dangerous schemes without knowing it… will they defeat them?

It was difficult coming up with a synopsis for this novel, since it’s an omnibus of the first two and I really didn’t want to give much of anything away.

There’s a strong chance that you’ve already read Charmed Life and The Lives of Christopher Chant, as they are much older titles! I am only just getting introduced to Diana Wynne Jones, back with Howl’s Moving Castle, and I must say – I’m delighted!!!

The first story in The Chronicles of Crestomanci, Volume I, Charmed Life was, well, charming! Also, original and very imaginative.

Cat as a character goes through impressive character growth in the novel. All the characters are interesting, bursting with personality, and the locale of this fantasy land plus the Chrestomanci castle sweep the mind away quite pleasantly.

What’s especially nice is that beyond Charmed Life being satisfyingly magical and full of slow-brimming, excellent surprises and continual twists, there’s this feeling of a cohesive plot that pulls all this whimsy together.

It’s enjoyable and fun but has enough depth and wight to make it mean something.

Then the second book, The Lives of Christopher Chant, gives us more history – goes back in time a bit from the first book, and allows us more insight and a glimpse at truly intriguing characters and situations.

I wasn’t sure if the second book would be able to meet the high standards I had of the first, yet it matched or maybe even exceeded them!!!

The Lives of Christopher Chant was also entertaining, different, and enchanting.

I know I’m not giving a lot of details, but I hope you realize that these two books in one was a BLAST!!! They feature children characters but I was pleased to pieces and I’m going to be going on my 26th birthday this year.

So, check it out!!!

I now desperately want the next four books (in two omnibuses!).

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