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Kiki's Delivery Service

(Kiki's Delivery Service #1)

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  933 ratings  ·  159 reviews
"A lovely story that became a classic in Japan and a popular animated home video throughout North America."

Kiki is a resourceful, spunky girl who follows her maternal tradition to be a witch. She possesses only one gift of witchcraft -- the power to fly. Like all young witches, she sets out at age 12 to find a town of her own. With her ever-present companion Jiji -- a
Hardcover, 164 pages
Published February 1st 2003 by Annick Press (first published January 25th 1985)
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Average rating 3.96  · 
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 ·  933 ratings  ·  159 reviews

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Rebecca McNutt
It took me a while to get a copy of this book in English (I don't think I could read Japanese even if you paid me, that's my little sister's second-language of interest, mine is French), but I finally got a copy! While Kiki's Delivery Service is a film I only vaguely remember watching as a child, I'd always wanted to read the book. There aren't too many mainstream Japanese fantasy novels in this sort of lighthearted and fun style that were popular when I was younger, but Kiki's Delivery Service ...more
Dec 18, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When I was living in Japan I decided to read a kid's book to help me practice reading at a level I could possibly undertake. Since I had seen and enjoyed the film, I decided on this one. (Better, I thought, than reading a translation of Harry Potter or something like that.) I thought, since I knew the story, I could better make guesses and use "context clues" (as they used to say in school) when confronted with unfamiliar vocabulary.

Little did I know that, like Miyazaki's godawful adaptation of
Jenn { pink.dove.reads }
Jan 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book was hard to track down but I'm glad I finally got it. It's a delightfully cute story-just like the movie. Too bad it's not more easily available in English.
Harold Ogle
Apr 29, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: children and parents who enjoy fantasy
Shelves: fantasy, children
There're two kinds of speculative fiction: the kind that imagines people who are essentially the same as people of today, thrust into very different circumstances, and the kind that imagines that the people themselves are as different as their circumstances. It's always interesting to read a translation from a foreign country, because you often (as with Kiki's Delivery Service) can't tell which of the two it is. Kiki is a teenaged girl who's never had any romantic interest. At thirteen, she is ...more
Jul 09, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Young readers, readers who have seen the movie
Shelves: reviewed, fantasy-sf
I thought this book was better in ways than the Studio Gibli movie. For one reason, she doesn't play mind games with boys in the book. In fact, she says in the book that she doesn't understand the girls that DO play mind games, so it's interesting how they portrayed her in the movie. I also like how the book has each chapter as a month that she's in the town. It worked well. There was a chapter in the book, which I read before I saw the movie, that I thought would be really good in the movie, ...more
Zoe Peszek
May 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
I am so glad I was able to find this book! My city's public library did not have it, but they were able to get it for me from another library in the area. I have actually seen the movie adaptation of this book. I did not realize that I had until after I read it. I thought the story sounded familiar, so I researched it. I enjoyed reading the book much more than the movie. There is more detail in the book, and I like being able to imagine it more in my head than see it on the screen.

This is a
May 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens
"It had never occurred to Kiki that such bumbling, undignified flying out actually endear her to the people of the town."

How did I not know this existed? A must read for fans of the Ghibli movie. Adorable, quirky, and light.
Christy Broderick
Jan 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Reminded me so much of the movie, as I watched it a ton growing up. Loved feeling the childhood feels again while reading this ☺ ...more
Jul 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
A remarkably charming read. The book is certainly better than the movie, not to say the movie isn't fantastic. Jiji the cat is the best, pretty much. It reads at a third-grade level more or less, but I highly recommend to any adult looking to experience the wonder of childhood again. Now I'm off to watch the movie a second time!
Jan 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites, 2017, wizardous

This is a tale of a cheeky young witch named Kiki who didnt learn any type of witchcraft from her mother except for how to fly a broom; so she decides to use that ability and open a delivery business. It is a sweet little story of a witch and her black cat Jiji. It doesnt have big plots and twists, its more like a diary for Kikis adventures and the things she encounters while delivering parcels for the people of the city of Koriko.

Ive wanted to read this book since I learned that the anime movie
Margareta Dahlin
I have seen the story as anime film from the Ghibli Studios in Japan. I recommend that DVD warmly!!!! /--- Updated on March 6 2008> I have now read the book, in Swedish, but I think the translator missed the magic! But still I love the film they made from it! There's the magic! :-)
Aug 27, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children
The story is actually too flat. No sharp conflicts or interesting detours. It's charming in its own way, I suppose, and of course, the illustration is superb.
Aug 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Kiki's Delivery Service is better known in the US as a beloved Studio Ghibli film, but before that it was a children's book series first published in the 80's. Only the first novel made it to US shores in 2003, where the books have remained obscure and the sequels untranslated.

I don't want to reflect on the film adaptation too much, but it is worth noting that they are quite different beasts. The book is episodic, with new characters appearing every chapter or two, while old faces only make
Very cute book. Just like Howl's Moving Castle, the Ghibli film is way different and doesn't go into much detail as the book. It's been a while since I watched the movie but I can remember that the romance was a heavy aspect of it, whereas in the book it's more of a side plot.
The book is made up of various episodes of Kiki's year away from home. The small vignettes are sweet by themselves though there's not much of an overarching theme.

I'm interested to see if the sequels have deeper plot.

Young At Heart Reader
Feb 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: junior-fiction
Imagine my surprise when I discover that one of my favorite childhood films is based on a wonderful children's book. While the book and film and two separate things, both manage to be very entertaining and endearing.

The story here is more episodic, each new chapter telling about a different delivery. Honestly, I really didn't mind that it was different. Kiki is still the innocent, happy girl off on her journey to grow with her voice of reason cat, Jiji. It was nice to read something a little
It was nice to finally read the book at the origin of the Ghibli's movie. The atmosphere was pleasant and Kiki was likable, which helped to follow her little delivery adventures. She had to learn to deal with a big city and the people inside it, some more nice than others. The writing was smooth and if nothing was really outstanding, the story was entertaining. I missed a little the interactions with Tombo (there were very few of them in the book) and the moment when Kiki lost her powers, which ...more
Mar 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
i hadnt read any review or anything about it beforehand so discovering that the book is actually so different from the movie was very exciting. i really enjoyed these kiki adventures that were new to me and i think my only complaint is that the ending felt a bit sudden and i wish the story had continued just a little bit. but overall it was very fun and cute and it made me happy.
also i love the cover a lot :)
Jul 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned
This book is seriously so cute. I grew up loving the Miyazaki film and after reading this, the movie excellently captures the whimsical, childish spirit of the book. Its definitely a simple read and I wish I would have read it as a kid, as Im sure it would have been a book I re-read constantly.
Im re-watching the movie now, and I must say I love Tombo in the book much more. Hes much more shy and innocently obsessed with aeronautics. Of course its a Miyazaki so its stunning anyway.
Jul 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Read this cause of the Studio Ghibli movie! Its quite different, but I love both! Its pure adorableness~ ❤

Update: There is no English translation for the rest of the series



Excuse me while I go learn Japanese

Jun 29, 2017 rated it liked it
Kiki's Delivery Service I've checked this out of my library a few times and finally read it in May. This is one case where I'd say the film definitely outshines the book. The book is enjoyable on its own, but if you can't find a copy I'd say you're not missing much. It's sweet but nothing life changing.
Polina Poluekt
Jan 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
I read a Russian version of this book with the original Japanese cover illustration.

Being a fan of the anime, I enjoyed the book as well. I found Kiki's struggles and adventures very relatable, especially having to leave a beloved home for a new place, running a business, self-doubt - and then returning home but feeling happy to go back to a new place you grew to love.
Dec 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
What fun to finally read the kids book that inspired the Studio Ghibli film!

An adorable middle-grade book about a twelve-year-old witch as she goes off on her own to find a home and figure out what her gift is as a witch. Each chapter features an adventure as Kiki delivers messages, packages, and even an entire orchestra of instruments.
I really liked this book, it is very easy and relaxing to read. Kiki is such a good character and the whole book is heartwarming. If you have a bad day this is the book I will recommend to read to make it brighter.
Oct 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic book. Wish the sequels were available in English.
Appoline Piotrowski
Maybe I'm partial because I love the movie, but I found this book a charming read. I'll definitely read the others if they get translated.
Jul 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I picked up a copy of the book because I love the Ghibli move, and was happy to find that it was just as charming.
Gabrielle (qaomia)
Feb 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
It took me one chapter or two to get into this books mood, and after, I felt captivated. Each chapter is a little story on its own, and its a wonder of sweetness. ...more
Nonno Kato
May 19, 2019 rated it liked it
After learning to control her broomstick, Kiki sets up a flying courier service in town. However Kiki slowly loses her magic abilities, and she must overcome her self-doubt to get her powers back.
Emma (a morose reader)
i loved this story with all my heart as a child watching the ghibli movie and I love this story with all my heart as an adult reading the book!

Celene Fraticelli
Such a cute kids book.
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Eiko Kadono (角野 栄子) is a Japanese author of children's literature, picture books, non-fiction and essays in Shōwa and Heisei period Japan. Kadono was born in Tokyo, and attended the Nihon Fukushi University in Aichi prefecture, followed by a degree in English literature from Waseda University. After graduation in 1960 at the age of 25, she emigrated to Brazil, where she spent two years. She wrote ...more

Other books in the series

Kiki's Delivery Service (6 books)
  • Den Nya Häxkonsten (Kikis Expressbud #2)
  • 魔女の宅急便 その3 キキともうひとりの魔女 (Kiki's Delivery Service, #3)
  • 魔女の宅急便 その4 キキの恋 (Kiki's Delivery Service, #4)
  • 魔女の宅急便 その5 魔法のとまり木 (Kiki's Delivery Service, #5)
  • 魔女の宅急便 その6 それぞれの旅立ち [Sorezore No Tabidachi]

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