Half-Witch gave me the same atmospheric shivers that the Bear and the Nightingale gave me; it's got that same fairy-tale quality that makes every word seem a little bit like it's shrouded in fog, like you are discovering the book as you are reading it. And it has that same weird blend of folk-lore and Christianity that makes for a wild and excellent contrast of ideas and themes and mak ...more
Genuinely, though, I have no idea where or how I found this book. I can find no mention of it on my favourite book blogs, so presumably none of them recommended it to me. My friends have never heard of it. It appeared on none of the newsletters I subscribe to. Where did it come from? Did I just happen to stumble through the wardrobe while browsing Amazon and come upon it by pure chance? Did I wake up one morning with i ...more
Lizbet Lenz and her father Gerhard, a very unsuccessful magician, are always moving from town to town, usually quite speedily before being thrown out. Her father’s spells always seem to turn out wrong so they are forced to flee, but when they arrive in Abalia, Lizbeth, desperately tired of all the moving, really hopes they can stay. But after yet another series of spells gone wrong, ending with a spell causing Abalia to be rained on by mice, her father is quickly thrown into prison.
Half-Witch is imaginative, witty, and instructive. But rather than being divisive in his social commentary of religion, class, and all things in between, Schoffstall uses ...more
I really enjoyed the book, especially after the midway point turn. It is a fun exploration into the unknown. There are a few character twists that were definitely unexpected. Several of the non-lead characters could have used a bit more exploration or at least explanation, especially the witch-lore (and the rules they live by). Yet, the world that everything is set in WAS explained (whi ...more
"I don't think I would want a prince's heart at my feet. Ew." "So! Not for you the mawkish insincerities of a decayed and foppish aristocracy? I knew you were made of better stuff the moment I set eyes on you."
"Catarrh is expected in the spring, and the ague in winter, but neither is welcome."
"My new-born hopes perish upon the Tarpeian rocks! My spirit founders in the storm-wracked seas of expectat ...more
Half Witch is a delight to read. To a large extent because it takes the reader on a marvelous adventure in a peculiar, yet somehow familiar world, with so many twists and turns that I expected them to continue all the way to the back cover, and to an even larger extent because the two ...more
In Lizbet's world, everyone can talk to God (and get answers) just by taking the Eucharist. Unfortunately, God isn't very helpful and mostly wants to talk about how to avoid sin. This means that Lizbet has to solve her own problems, and when her father is thrown in prison she goes adventuring to find the book that will set him free. Along the way she discovers what it means to chang ...more
The book would be worth reading if that's all it wer ...more
ANYWAY. Half-Witch is delightfully quirky, darker than it seems, sometimes gruesome, sometimes touching, sometimes funny, ALWAYS irreverent and unexpected. While it is nothing at all like The Princess Bride, I think people who enjoyed that book will enjoy this one. Di ...more