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Earwig and the Witch

Earwig and the Witch

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Earwig and the Witch

évaluations:
4/5 (13 évaluations)
Longueur:
71 pages
39 minutes
Éditeur:
Sortie:
Jan 31, 2012
ISBN:
9780062075147
Format:
Livre

Description

"I would like to declare Diana Wynne Jones an international treasure," proclaimed Neil Gaiman, Newbery Medalist and best-selling author. In this enchanting introduction to Diana Wynne Jones's magical and funny work, Earwig is a fearless young orphan. When she finds herself in a house of dark magic, she does whatever she can to adapt—especially if it means that she'll learn a little magic herself! A young middle grade novel by World Fantasy Award for Lifetime Achievement‒winner Diana Wynne Jones, beautifully illustrated in black and white by Caldecott Medalist Paul O. Zelinsky.

Not every orphan would love living at St. Morwald's Home for Children, but Earwig does. She gets whatever she wants, whenever she wants it, and it's been that way since she was dropped on the orphanage doorstep as a baby. But all that changes the day Bella Yaga and the Mandrake come to St. Morwald's, disguised as foster parents. Earwig is whisked off to their mysterious house full of invisible rooms, potions, and spell books, with magic around every corner. Most children would run in terror from a house like that . . . but not Earwig. Using her own cleverness—with a lot of help from a talking cat—she decides to show the witch who's boss.

Éditeur:
Sortie:
Jan 31, 2012
ISBN:
9780062075147
Format:
Livre

À propos de l'auteur

DIANA WYNNE JONES was born in August 1934 in London, where she had a chaotic and unsettled childhood against the background of World War II. The family moved around a lot, finally settling in rural Essex. As children, Diana and her two sisters were deprived of a good, steady supply of books by a father, ‘who could beat Scrooge in a meanness contest’. So, armed with a vivid imagination and an insatiable quest for good books to read, she decided that she would have to write them herself.

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Aperçu du livre

Earwig and the Witch - Diana Wynne Jones

Publisher

At St. Morwald’s Home for Children it was the day when people who wanted to be foster parents came to see which children they might want to take home with them.

"How boring!" Earwig said to her friend Custard. The two of them were lined up in the dining room with the bigger children. Earwig thought this whole afternoon was an utter waste of time. She was perfectly happy at St. Morwald’s. She liked the clean smell of polish everywhere and the bright, sunny rooms. She liked the people there. This was because everyone, from Mrs. Briggs the Matron to the newest and smallest children, did exactly what Earwig wanted. If Earwig fancied shepherd’s pie for lunch, she could get the cook to make it for her. If she wanted a new red sweater, Mrs. Briggs hurried out and bought it for her. If she wanted to play hide-and-seek in the dark, all the children played, even though some of them were frightened. Earwig was never frightened. She had a very strong personality.

There were noises from the playroom next door, where the babies and toddlers were lined up, too. Earwig could hear people crying out, Oh, isn’t she sweet! and "Oh, just look at this little one’s eyes!"

Disgusting! Earwig muttered. What cheek! Earwig liked most of the babies and all the toddlers, but she did not think they were made to be admired. They were people, not dolls.

It’s all right for you, her friend Custard said. Nobody ever chooses you.

Earwig liked Custard best out of everyone at St. Morwald’s. He always did exactly what she said. His only fault was that he got scared rather too often. She said soothingly, You never get chosen either. Don’t worry.

But people hover over me, Custard said. "Sometimes they almost choose me. Then he added, very daringly, Don’t you ever want to be chosen and go to live somewhere else, Earwig?"

No, Earwig said firmly. But she wondered about it. Might it just be fun to go and live in an ordinary house the way other children did? Then she thought of all the numbers of people in St. Morwald’s who all did exactly what she wanted, and she realized that in an ordinary house, there would only be two or three people, or six at the most. That was far too few to be interesting. No, she said. Anyone who chose me would have to be very unusual.

Just then, Mrs. Briggs came hurrying through from the playroom, looking flustered. The bigger ones are in here, she said. If you’d like to follow me, I’ll tell you the names and a little bit about each child.

Earwig had only time to whisper warningly to Custard, Remember to cross your eyes like I taught you! before a very strange couple followed Mrs. Briggs into the dining room. Earwig could see that they had tried to make themselves look ordinary, but she knew they were not, not in the least. The woman had one brown eye and one blue one, and a raggety, ribby look to her face. It was not a nice face. The woman had

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Ce que les gens pensent de Earwig and the Witch

3.8
13 évaluations / 11 Avis
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Avis des lecteurs

  • (4/5)
    Fun little story. Earwig sounds like she'll be nasty, but somehow manages to make everyone do what she wants without being either a bully or a schemer. Mostly, she's lucky! There should be a good bit more to the story - her mother, and such - but this is what we have. I needed a break from Strange and Norrell.
  • (4/5)
    A light, fun read best used as a chaser in between more serious or longer books. Since this is designed for younger readers, it doesn't have the mind-bending twists of Jones' more complex novels ... if Wynne Jones were alive, I would wish for her to rewrite this for older readers and expand the whole story. And write many more, of course. *sigh*
  • (4/5)
    Shortbut fun.
  • (3/5)
    This was a really good read. I could have finished it in an hour, but spread it out over a few days mixing it up with the other book I started. I might have given it more stars if it had been a little longer and in more depth. I know it is a young children's book, but I could see the potential story that DWJ could have expanded it into. It's the last book she wrote entirely herself.Anyway, the story is about a little girl, Earwing who lives happily in an Orphanage, with good friends and people who do what she wants. She doesn't want to leave, but a strange couple come one day and pick her to everyone's surprise. Turns out the woman is a witch in need of an assistant/slave and the man a mandrake, a rather grumpy but well-mannered demon. They don't know what they've let themselves into when they take Earwig home with them. She does not know it, but is the daughter of a witch, and purposes talents of her own, coupled with her intelligence and arrogance, she eventually gets people around her to do what she wants and these two are no exception. And of course, she makes a new friends in Thomas, the talking black cat, with whom she conspires to get her way! It reminded me a bit of a DWJ short story, What the Cat Told Me. I like talking animals! :)
  • (4/5)
    This is a hilarious tale of Earwig, a little girl dropped off at a orphanage with a note pinned to her saying "Got the other twelve witches all chasing me. I'll be back for her when I've shook them off. It may take years. Her name is Earwig." Though the orphanage had regular tours of potential foster parents going through, Earwig, who has "a very strong personality", managed to never be picked, on purpose. She liked her ability to get whatever she wanted there. However, a very strange couple (though only she seemed to be able to see HOW strange) took her home with them. The woman is a witch who just needs "an extra pair of hands", and the man is something else (made clear by the horns that are not quite hidden on his head). And so her adventure begins.This reminds me, in a lot of ways (including a wild hairdo), of Pippi Longstocking, whom I loved greatly in my childhood. This updated version has magical tricks and treats and no small amount of humor. I wish this was to be a series, but alas, Jones passed away in 2011. Still this is an amazing treat, and I can see why Neil Gaiman says "I would like to declare Diann Wynne Jones an international treasure."
  • (3/5)
    The last book from Diana Wynne Jones. This is a much younger book than Jones usually wrote. Enjoyable enough, but very slight.
  • (5/5)
    Earwig loves life at St. Morwald's Home for Children. She has everyone, from the matron to the cook to the youngest orphan, under her thumb. She has no intention of being adopted -- until Bella Yaga and the Mandrake show up. Bella Yaga proves to have an even stronger personality than Earwig . . . or does she? Bella Yaga and the Mandrake take Earwig home with them despite her objections. Though Earwig is homesick for the orphanage, she is hopeful that Bella Yaga will teach her some magic. Bella Yaga, however, is only looking for "another pair of hands" -- someone to chop ingredients and stir cauldrons and clean the workroom. What follows is an epic battle of wills. Will Earwig convince Bella Yaga to teach her magic, or has the determined young girl finally met her match?This book is so typically Diana Wynne Jones -- quirky and funny and delightful. It skews a little younger than many of Jones' other books, so will serve as a great introduction for young readers. Earwig doesn't seem a sympathetic character at first, but by the end of the book, readers will be firmly under her spell.
  • (3/5)
    Very short Diana Wynne Jones book, geared toward younger readers. One kind of thinks there should have been a sequel, after all there is still the mystery of Earwig's mother, who is still on the run, evidently.
  • (4/5)
    This is presumably the last Diana Wynne Jones there will ever be, unless she’s left a manuscript behind. It’s a short (very short) story for younger children, all about a plucky, not to say bossy, orphan, and the witch who adopts her and rather comes to regret it. Vintage DWJ. Far too brief, of course, but all we can do now is be thankful for her legacy.
  • (4/5)
    It is light and delightful. And to the best of my memory, the sort of book I would have enjoyed reading as a child.
  • (4/5)

    1 personne a trouvé cela utile

    Ages 8-11.Earwig is perfectly happy to remain at St. Morwald’s Home for Children. But one day, her uncanny ability to deter prospective foster-parents fails, and she goes home with the strangest couple: Bella Yaga, a “raggety, ribby” faced woman with terrible fashion sense, and a tall man who seems to have horns above his ears. At her new home, Earwig is instructed to grind rats bones and pick herbs for the cauldron, and soon determines that Bella Yaga is a witch. With the help of her new friend Thomas the cat, Earwig sets her mind to learning magic herself.Children who love classic fairy tale takes on magic will enjoy the wonderful descriptions of disgusting spell ingredients and secret brewing processes. Despite her fantastic situation, Earwig is a relatable character in that she is a head-strong child responding to a situation where someone else is the boss. The witch's threats to give people worms and the brooding mandrake may frighten some young children, but the story is more whimsical than scary.Zelinsky’s pen and ink illustrations capture the spunk and ingenuity of Earwig’s personality. His illustrations add great visual appeal as he depicts the fascinating details of the workshop and whirling bits of demons.Fifteen lines of text per page with generous whitespace and simple sentence structure will assist readers transitioning from easy readers to more complex texts. Earwig is clever, likes a challenge, and is determined to have her way. Readers will cheer on this formidable young witch. Recommended.

    1 personne a trouvé cela utile