Her brother Eric (better known as Cat) is not so keen, for he has no talent for magic at all. However, life with the great enchanter is not what either of them expects and sparks begin to fly!
— Publisher’s Blurb
I quite enjoyed the first two books I read by Diana Wynne Jones. Deep Secret and The Merlin Conspiracy. So I was always intending to read this one during the Once Upon a Time Challenge, but with the sad passing of Diana Wynne Jones recently, I quickly decided to make this one the book start the challenge with.
And, I have to be honest, I didn’t really like it. 🙁 There are just too few sympathetic characters, you have to dislike the bad-guys and their minions, not want to slap them, which is what I wanted to do to Gwendolen for most of the book. 😐
And because the role of Crestomanci is necessarily kept from Cat, Gwendolen and Janet, it is kept from us as well, so we never really get to know him. The things I like about Wynne Jones’ writing in Deep Secret and The Merlin Conspiricy, dropping the reader in to the middle of story and trusting them to follow along, annoyed me in this one.
I feel slightly ashamed I didn’t enjoy this one, it almost feels like heresy 😉 I still want to read more of her works thought, and I’d like to give the Crestomanci another chance to work his charms, and I’ve heard good things about Witch Week, and I think I’ll be reading that one later in the challenge.