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Mirimirage

Allusion is not Illusion

You'll pry my books off my cold, dead body. By the time you shift them all I'll be flat and dessicated.

Currently reading

Winter's Tales
Karen Blixen, Isak Dinesen
Black Lamb and Grey Falcon (Penguin Classics)
Rebecca West, Christopher Hitchens
Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
Susanna Clarke
Already Dead
Charlie Huston
The Rings of Saturn
W.G. Sebald, Michael Hulse
Lady Audley's Secret
Mary Elizabeth Braddon, David Skilton
Unequal Protection: How Corporations Became "People" - And How You Can Fight Back
Thom Hartmann
The City, Not Long After
Pat Murphy
You Can Sketch: A Step-by-Step Guide for Absolute Beginners
Jackie Simmonds
Lonely Werewolf Girl
Martin Millar
The Witch's Garden - Ruth Chew

This is my third Ruth Chew book. They have all been pretty similar: a couple of pleasant but very forgettable kids have some fantastical but very mild adventures.

I read this book last night and have already forgotten the names of the two kids: something common and Anglophone like Susie and Paul. While engaged in the forbidden naughtiness of roasting hotdogs over a fire, they go to get more wood from the garden of the empty house next door, which turns out not to be empty. They have a new neighbor. No spoiler: she's a witch. The plants have magical properties. Adventures Short mishaps ensue.

It's actually rather impressive how not-scary Chew manages to make scenes like being shrunk and chased by giant insects and animals. The kids seem a lot more worried about the girl's parents getting mad that they accidentally threw out the paper before Father was done with the crossword. Maybe that's realistic.

I recommend this for timid kids who don't like suspense, or for bedtime reading. In addition to not being scary, there isn't much plot (incidents happen, but there's no serious danger or ultimate problem to solve) so it won't keep anyone awake.