Castle In The Air

Man, I’m so obsessed with Howl’s Moving Castle. Right after I finished the book, I found out there is a sequel about Howl and Sophie’s marriage life.  Immediately I ran to the book store again and purchased a copy. But after reading through the book, I was utterly disappointed. Howl and Sophie don’t even appear until the end. It talked about they got married and have a baby together. But the main plot is not really about them.

Instead, Castle In The Air is about this carpet merchant, Abdullah,  from the land of Zanzib. He incidentally acquires a flying carpet and lands in the midst of a series of fantastic adventures. The characters includes an evil djinn, beautiful princesses, a genie in a bottle, women-turned-cats, and soldiers-turned-frogs. This is Arabian Nights with a twist. We would only see the connection between these two books when Abdullah travels to Ingary and sees the floating castle in the air. Later on he meets some of the original casts from the first book.

Even though the story wasn’t what I had expected, it is still quite entertaining. After I started reading, I couldn’t put it down and finished the 300-page book within one night. Once again, Diana Wynne Jones constructed a wonderfully complicated plot, full of magic, fantasy, sarcastic humor and fun. Children of grade 6 and up would really enjoy reading this book.

However, I still want to find out what would happen to Howl and Sophie? Are they happily ever after? Or would they go through a series of adventures together? Would Howl become softer after he gains his heart back? What happens to Sophie’s curse? All these questions linger in my mind. Hee~~ maybe I should start writing a sequel myself~~

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