[DWJ] Ogre and magic

Kylie Ding kylie_ding at hotmail.com
Tue Jan 24 09:01:08 EST 2012

I've been thinking hard about what to say about The Ogre Downstairs.  I know
when I like something, but it's much harder to talk about why!


I think what makes The Ogre Downstairs special for me, and I think the first
of the DWJ books that are something special, is the way the magic is so well
integrated into the real world.  The chemistry sets are chemistry sets.  And
they are magic.  They make smells, and make you fly.  The children in the
story took it completely in their stride.  They didn't stop and question the
why, they jumped out the window and went to see the sights!  I think that
seamless blend of the fantastic and the ordinary is one of the things that
makes DWJ's work really special.


Plus there's the Greek alphabet bits.  When I read the book as a kid my eyes
glazed over and I skipped those bits as I would with any foreign language.
It was such a delight to discover she was just using the Greek letters to
make understandable words.  It was like there was a secret message in there,
just for me.




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