‘Enchanted Glass’ by Diana Wynne Jones

As I mentioned before, I have been eager to pick up Enchanted Glass for a while.  After being turned off the Chrestomanci series in childhood, I experienced in late adolescence a profound delight in Jones’ other series and books.  Many of her characters have delightfully stubborn and wilful natures, perhaps part of why I resonate strongly with her books.

In Enchanted Glass we meet Andrew, a man who inherits his deceased grandfather’s estate, along with all manner of complications.  Aside from a housekeeper who makes cauliflower cheese and a gardener who exacts vengeance with runner beans, there is magic, a failing computer system, and the unexpected appearance of a grand-orphan.

I don’t want to explain the plot too much, because in all of Jones’ books the experience of the prose makes the story more than the sum of its parts.  Suffice to say that it is wonderful and well worth skipping a meal to keep my hands free for reading.  As always I loved the way that characters live and speak.  People can get along without having to like each other, and people can love each other without getting along, and oh it is rare to find that in any book but somehow Jones always shows the nuances and clashes between personalities well.  It’s what I loved in Howl’s Moving Castle, and what I loved finding in the characters of Enchanted Glass.

Though I must guiltily confess that I had Anthony Stewart Head cast in my mind as the middle-aged and glasses-polishing professor.  I rarely ever associate actors with fictional characters, because fiction is usually far more vivid than television, but the tweedy distractedness of Andrew reminded me strongly of Giles.  I suspect I may have offended bibliophiles and Jossfans alike, but really it’s only because I have dear love for both men in my heart.

Other reviews I have found at:

On The Nightstand

Vulpes Libris

Charlotte’s Library

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