15 April, 2016

Book Club Friday: Dianna Wynne Jones' The Islands of Chaldea

"The Islands of Chaldea is a new, stand-alone novel of magic and adventure by the renowned fantasy author Diana Wynne Jones. It was almost finished upon her death in 2011, the manuscript was completed by Diana's sister Ursula Jones, an acclaimed novelist and actress. Aileen comes from a long line of magic makers, and her Aunt Beck is the most powerful magician on Skarr. But Aileen's magic has yet to reveal itself, even though she is old enough and it should have, by now. When Aileen is sent over the sea on a mission for the King, she worries that she'll be useless and in the way. A powerful (but mostly invisible) cat changes all of that—and with every obstacle Aileen faces, she becomes stronger and more confident, until her magic blooms. This stand-alone novel, by the beloved and acclaimed author of such classic fantasy novels as Howl's Moving Castle and the Chrestomanci books, will be welcomed by fans old and new" • Read More: Imaginary Reads

In a nutshell:
Fantasy and Adventure. The kiddie type.
This is a mismatch for me.


Dianna Wynne Jones' The Islands of Chaldea is not for me. The only reason why I got a copy of the e-Book was because this was a reading assignment in my book club. I judged it by its cover and I should have trusted my instincts. Magic, kingdoms, and pseudo-witches or wise women, it was interesting at first but as I progressed through the story, I found myself struggling to finish it. There were just way too many characters which I think would work better if it were in a different platform.

I went as far as Chapter 11 to see there was something promising to it, but I just did not find it brilliant. Talking animals have always weirded me out and just never appealed to me, but it probably does to children. When I was reading it, I could not help but think of local, old school Pinoy fantasy movies like Enteng Kabisote or Magic Kingdom. A game or a movie may be a more appropriate medium for The Islands of Chaldea.

Rating
★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆



Have you read anything new lately? You may share your reviews at Book Club Friday. Visit Heather's blog at Blonde Undercover Blonde or Katie's at The Nerdy Katie. Don't forget to say hello. • Image Credit: Web E-Reading.

My last Book Club Friday post was Ava Dellaria's Love Letters to the Dead.
☮..Peace + ❥_Love + Good Vibes.__RUSS.

50 comments:

Elizabeth O. said...

Fantasy novels are refreshing for me, especially when I'm trying to relax and just go to a place where there's not stress at all. It takes you to a whole new universe and it's really amazing. I'm sorry you didn't enjoy the book. At least you gave it a chance.

Lana Slaybell said...

Sounds cheesy, especially the Enteng Kabisote part. I wanted to read a novel for a long time. Seems I can't find one.

Saminu Abass said...

This is a great novel. This novel will be great reading when you are stressed up, just ude this calm yourself down.

Kathy Lacuna said...

Fantasy is not for me too. I would rather curl up with a good spy novel or a non-fiction book anytime.

Bhushavali N said...

Russ! I know your feeling. I can't read such stories too. Guess what, I haven't seen/read even 1 Harry Potter and many get so surprised when I say this!

Claire Algarme said...

I guess with the advent of Harry Potter and such, fantasy and magical books are probably getting more popular among publishing companies. I often read this kind of books. I probably have outgrown them but I sometimes read such on certain occasions.

mail4rosey said...

I think it's wonderful that her sister completed it for her. THat must have been very therapeutic.

Fred Experience said...

Interesting book. I am also a fan of fantasy Novels. Too bad you did not like it. But i think young kids would love it though. Thanks for the review.

Amanda Love said...

So sorry to hear that you had trouble finishing it. I'm one of those who not only judge books by their covers but I also read reviews before buying. This isn't my cup of tea so I won't be picking it up.

Nicol said...

like you, its not the one for me but i do love the cover. its veering eye catching

Leke Awonuga said...

Sounds really cool to read such novels. Glad you challenged yourself in reading the book still, regardless of the outcome. I'm a sucker for good adventure books and possible relating it to a movie scene gets me excited for more.

Rochkirstin Santos said...

Talking animals also don't appeal to me unless it's been said in the story that they have the capability to speak after being given the power to do so by a certain magician. :) This is a fair reading assignment because it makes you think.

Erica Villas said...

I love fantasy novels but nothing has really impressed me since Harry Potter series. I just want something as good as it is, is that too much to ask?! Haha. I'll check this out since I'm a sucker for books too.

Franc said...

I think it's easier to watch something like this than reading it. The effects can help in getting you glued on the story.

Fred Hawson said...

I had to read young adult books too either to screen what my kids were reading or to help them with their required reading in English school. It may not really be the type of books you really like to read. Some are excellent like "The Giver," but some are not, like "Twilight".

Sunshine Kelly said...

I think is book is not for me either. I am not into the kingdoms, magic, witches and such. I would prefer non fiction.

RainbowDiaries Website said...

I so miss reading books. Most of the times, now am reading using digital devices only.

Lori said...

This fantasy novel sounds like a must read for those who love this genre. I see the authors are famous and experienced - so I'm guessing the book is interesting. I'll look it up as you made me curious!

Phylicia Marie Pineda said...

It does sound a wee bit too childish, and I might agree with you on a movie being a better platform for the story. The premise would have been nice but the execution was poor.

heidi said...

I love fantasy and science fiction. Maybe because it was completed by another author hurt the book. It does get confusing when there are too many characters

Alison said...

I am not a big fantasy person when it comes to books. The things that you didn't love about it are things that turn me off to a book too. It drives me crazy when there are too many characters and when they can use all these different powers. I love to read but definitely certain genres.

Kristine Redillas said...

The feels, it's somehow disappointing when you read a book then you just don't have a spark together. :(

A Busy Bees Life said...

I really do not enjoy reading fantasy books, I have tried to read three of them and never could get myself to complete them. I have watch a few fantasy movies which were good but reading is a no no. I am currently reading Post Office - Charles Bukowski

Travelerette said...

Awww, I love Dianna Wynne Jones, but then I love fantasy. My favorite of hers are the Chrestomanci series and Howl's Moving Castle. (I also love the Miyazaki movie based on Howl's Moving Castle.) But the blurb says this was finished by the author's sister, so maybe it's not as good for that reason.

berlin domingo said...

One of the books with animals on it is Book of Pi and I enjoyed that. Perhaps Life of Pi and The Islands of Chaldea are two different books and have different genres. Surely that book would make some children excited. But its also nice to read books even that does not interest us in order for us to determine what we would want to keep and recommend.

Joanna said...

Based on your description this book seems like it could be a perfect fit for a child that is into witches and talking animals. I am not a fan, to be honest.

Liezel Regidor said...

I myself am very picky when it comes to fantasy novels. I have very few novels that I really liked (including Harry Potter and Percy Jackson). I guess it's not about the plot but the way the author tells the story. I think this books won't appeal to me as well. So thanks for your honest review. More power to you!

Jessica Ayun said...

Never heard of this book but I love fantasy theme stories. On this book, use of objects are jusr not so brilliant combinations.

so far so sabine said...

Great that you are writing such an honest review. When a book is not that great, it's good to say so too. Magical books aren't my thing in general. I would not take this book to start with. If you would recommend it however, I maybe would've changed my mind.

Anonymous said...

I love it

Michelle Gwynn Jones said...

Personally I like a fantasy novel, as long as its well written I will try any book.

Enricoh Alfonzo Naidu said...

Ooooh! I love fantasy books! Can't wait to order this one online. going to check out the author on twitter now. yay. #Bookslove wowooooh

Rachel Mouton said...

I might check this out for my son. He likes these types of books. Thanks for giving your views about it though :)

Jasmine said...

Interesting... I'm sorry you didn't like it! I'm not much of a sci-fi fan, so I know I wouldn't like this story either. Here's to hoping your next book is a great one!

Nicole Escat said...

Sorry to hear that you struggled in finishing reading it, I have the same experienced with a book. Maybe, covers are not the ebook all about!

Danne Reed said...

I am not a fan of fantasy novel too, I rarely read. If I read one, I make sure that the plot is very interesting.

Tione Rdny said...

I never like reading a book that I would struggle to finish. I love books that has great hooks that would make me want to finish reading it within a day.

Chrishelle Ebner said...

I am not a big fan of fantasy either. Hope you find a book for your summer reading that you can enjoy.

Amy Jones said...

I think I would like to give this book a try. I have found myself enjoying fantasy books in the past.

Ann B said...

I enjoy reading Fantasy novels. I like that anything is plausible. I will have to check this one out.

Stacie said...

I know it didn't appeal to you, but this actually sounds like something I'd love. I've read all the Redwall books which are exclusively talking animals.

LifeAsAConvert said...

Sorry it wasn't a good fit for you. I try to finish books even if I don't like them, but there have been a few that no matter how much I tried, I just couldn't finish. I've been reading CJ Box's Joe Picket series lately.

Rika Agustini said...

Sounds like a great novel! I can't wait to read this book, I love fantasy novels

Mistee Dawn said...

Sounds like a book I need to check out. I've been reading a lot of Bella Forrest books lately.

Rebecca Swenor said...

This sounds like a read for my nephew who is into stories like this one. I would probably read it thought just to check it out. Thanks for sharing your honest opinion.

Mauie Flores said...

I'm not much of a fantasy novel reader, too. The only fantasy novel I enjoyed is the Harry Potter series. And no, I do not like Enteng Kabisote. Haha!

Hil'Lesha O'Nan said...

I like watching fantasy movies from time to time - just never really got into fantasy novels. I haven't had a chance to read, but I have Dollbaby waiting for me on my Kindle. I'm looking forward to reading it!

mail4rosey said...

Not sure why my comment for a different post you wrote a long time ago showed up in this post? Weird!

I'm glad you went so far to keep giving this a try. Sometimes they do get better as they progress, sorry to hear that was not the case for you on this one.

Lynndee said...

I do love reading books about vampires, but I don't think I'll be interested in reading a book about witches. Thanks for your honest review on this.

MaryJane Tauyan said...

u reminded of enteng kabisote always a hit during christmas haha havent read any book for years altho i love buying them hehe