[DWJ] Impress of first book? (was Homeward Bounders)

Eleanor Joslin eleanor at dreamvine.org.uk
Thu Apr 14 13:28:57 EDT 2011


My first was *Charmed Life* when I was about 10.  I remember being wowed 
by the use of other worlds - I'd read the Narnia books, so I was 
familiar with the basic idea, but I think I assumed that although every 
story with magic in happened in a made-up world, it wasn't a *different* 
world from ours unless the book said so.  *Charmed Life* said so in what 
seemed to me a new and totally genius way.

After that I was read *The Ogre Downstairs* at school, and I found a few 
more in libraries - *Howl's Moving Castle*, *Witch Week*, *Power Of 
Three*, and one I was obsessed with for a while, *The Lives of 
Christopher Chant*.  But she didn't consciously become my favourite 
author until I was 13 and we moved to a new area.  I found *The Ogre 
Downstairs* in my new school library, like meeting an old friend, and 
proceeded to read all the others they had.  I held off reading *Fire and 
Hemlock* for a while, because it looked like a romance and they weren't 
my thing, but when I did read it it blew me away.  My obsession with it 
lasted about a year and a half, on and off - one of the breaks was while 
I had an *Archer's Goon* obsession shortly after it was on TV.  By this 
time I was also buying the books; the first one I bought without having 
read it beforehand was *The Homeward Bounders*.  I had more than 20 by 
the time I was 16, and celebrated the end of my exams that year by 
holing myself up with some Kendal mint cake and the newly published 
*Hexwood*.

My regret is that, due to the intense DWJ-ness of my teens, I didn't 
read more widely.  She is so obviously always in a dialogue with other 
books, but most of the time I don't know which ones.

	Eleanor

On 14/04/11 10:41, Kyra Jucovy wrote:
> In common with, seemingly, many of you, my first DWJ was *Dogsbody, *but it
> definitely wasn't the one that made me go out and seek the rest of DWJ -
> that was *The Lives of Christopher Chant*.  My memory, which may or may not
> be accurate, is that my parents actually gave me *Dogsbody *for my eighth
> birthday and that I read TLoCC several months later, but, anyway, both were
> when I was around eight.  I have more of an appreciation for *Dogsbody *as
> an adult and still have an appreciation for TLoCC, but neither one of them
> is my favorite or has ever been my favorite (I always have a definite
> favorite DWJ book, but this changes over time.  When I was a kid, it was *Witch
> Week*, as a teenager it was *Archer's Goon*, as a college student it was *Fire
> &  Hemlock*, and as an adult it's *The Homeward Bounders*.  As an adult I
> kind of feel that THB is the perfect book and that it's hard to imagine my
> tastes ever changing again, but then, I know I felt exactly that way as a
> teenager about *Archer's Goon*.).
>
> ----Kyra
>
> On Thu, Apr 14, 2011 at 3:09 PM, Ehsan Roudiani<es at historicalfact.com>wrote:
>
>> F&H is the one I'm in love with too - I read it when I was much too young
>> to have much of a clue about what it was about! My big sister had F&H,
>> Charmed Life, The Lives of Christopher Chant, Archer's Goon and The Ogre
>> Downstairs, they were my collective introduction to DWJ. I read Dogsbody as
>> well but didn't enjoy it - aged about 7, it was too sad for me!
>>
>> I probably read F&H about 4 times a year, and it's still my favourite book
>> by any author. I know it off by heart and have never gotten sick of it.  I
>> don't tend to reread Ogre or Archer a lot, but I do go through the
>> Chrestomanci ones on a reasonably regular basis.
>>
>> Ehsan.
>>
>>
>>
>> On 13 Apr 2011, at 18:53, slwones at gmail.com wrote:
>>
>>   I read Dogsbody at 10 and liked it a lot, but didn't then go pursue every
>>> DWJ book ever written. I remember it mostly because my father picked it up
>>> one night, read it all the way through, and then talked to me about it for
>>> the next few days. I was impressed that one of MY books had hooked a
>>> grown-up.
>>>
>>> I tend to think of Fire&  Hemlock as my first DWJ since that is the one I
>>> fell completely in love with and that led me to obsessively chasing down
>>> all
>>> of her other books. F&  H is still definitely my favorite. Then I have
>>> about
>>> five second favorites.
>>> Suzanne
>>>
>>
>>
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