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Witch Week by Diana Wynne Jones

Review by Alleandra

The World
An alternate version of earth. Here, magic is prevalent, however witches are considered extremely bad.

The Characters
The children at a boarding school that takes in many ‘witch orphans’, are the main characters. In the batch of 2Y misfits we find Nirupam Singh from India, who is related to witches, Nan Pilgrim who is the granddaughter of a very notorious witch and Charles Morgan, a sullen boy with no friends. The biggest misfit of the class though is Brian Wentworth who is the son of the school’s Deputy Headmaster.

The Story
In this world, if you are a witch you are arrested and burned, which is why there is such a large number of ‘witch orphans’. The children all know this, and Charles in particular has had some awful experiences of witnessing burnings etc. But one day, one of the teachers in 2Y receives an anonymous note stating that one child in the class is a witch. The secret of the note is short lived, and soon the entire class is speculating as to who is the witch. Soon, strange occurrences start taking place, with the blame placed upon one child.

In a book where such a horrific consequence is the result of being a witch, it is hard to believe that the book could be lighthearted and fun. And yet, it is. Diana Wynne Jones writes with a nice sense of humor, and her characters are a good mix. In the class, there are the ‘perfect’ boy and girl whom everyone but the outcasts try to emulate. The ‘witchy’ happenings are funny, in fact there is one prank that is quite hilarious. Although this book is not as good as the authors’ Charmed Life, it is still a good read.

4 out of 5 amulets

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