Book Review: Enchanted Glass

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Title: Enchanted Glass
Author: Diana Wynne Jones
Origins: My Local Library
Summary: [from GoodReads]
When the magician Jocelyn Brandon Hope died he bequeathed Melstone House to his grandson Andrew. He also left his ‘field of care’: an area of strangeness surrounding the land around the house, whose boundary Andrew must walk in order to preserve its power.

Andrew had always loved the house, but he finds owning it a lot more complicated, aside from all the magic. There is Mrs Stock, the tyrannical housekeeper who won’t let him move the furniture and punishes him with her terrible cooking. Just as bad is the obsessive gardener who will only grow giant inedible vegetables. To add to his troubles, twelve year old orphan Aidan Cain suddenly arrives on the doorstep begging protection from magical stalkers, and Andrew’s sinister rich neighbour, Mr Brown, begins to encroach on the ‘field of care’. The one compensation is the gardener’s beautiful niece, Stashe. Things become stranger and stranger until all is made clear with the help of the enchanted glass itself.

My Review: I’ve probably already said this, but Diana Wynne Jones is one of my favorite authors ever. When she died earlier this year, we lost one of the greatest minds that I have ever admired. Enchanted Glass is the last book she ever wrote, and while I’m grateful to have it, I will be feeling the loss of her new works for many years to come.

One of the things I’ve always admired about Diana is how she always builds a completely new, beautiful world with each work. They all feel as if they might be related, because her style is so distinctive, but they’re all fresh and new, each with its own rules and its own quirks. Enchanted Glass is no exception. The rural England setting makes for a charming mixture of modern day with quaint old-fashioned small town, allowing for an entirely new brand of magical mischief.

Though the plot was slightly predictable – I had worked out who everyone was and who would win in the end by about halfway through – it was the reading experience itself that made this so truly enjoyable for me. Picking up any of Diana’s books, for me, is like reacquainting myself with an old friend that you haven’t spoken to for years. True, the cover may have changed and the plot may have lost (or gained) a few parallel universes, but that spark that created the original friendship is still there, waiting for you to rediscover it.

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2 Responses to “Book Review: Enchanted Glass”

  1. Kate says:

    Oh, I nearly bought this book about a year ago, maybe. It sounded really good actually and came with a different cover to yours. I wish I had bought it now, especially since you speak so highly of the author :)

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