Kevin's Reviews > A Spell for Chameleon

A Spell for Chameleon by Piers Anthony
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's review
Jun 23, 2008

did not like it
bookshelves: fantasy, ya-fiction
Recommended for: nobody.

I wish I could give this book a higher review. The storytelling is tight, the magic is interesting, and it can be occasionally funny. But the characters are mostly two-dimensional, with maybe an extra half dimension added to The Evil Magician Trent and to Chameleon of the book's title. And oh my god is this thing sexist. Chameleon herself could be a truly great character if Anthony had much interest in watch she thinks of her condition, of how her thinking changes as she changes, or in any other aspect of her as a person. But no, she's just Teh Hottie reward for our annoying hero, Bink, who as a stand-in for the author (and why not presume as much) is a whining douchebag. He's supposed to be 25 years old? Really? I've met 12 year old boys with more maturity.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
June 18, 2008 – Finished Reading
June 23, 2008 – Shelved
June 23, 2008 – Shelved as: fantasy
June 23, 2008 – Shelved as: ya-fiction

Comments (showing 1-6 of 6) (6 new)

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message 1: by C. (new) - rated it 2 stars

C. Sheehan "Bink, who is a stand-in for the author... is a whining douchebag." Harsh, but true. I feel generous with three stars.

Christine All of what you say is true. But this book is still a guilty pleasure for me. I enjoyed it as a kid, and am having fun reading it again as an adult.

Lindsey Guy For the most part I just enjoyed the book for what it was, a fun light read. But I have to disagree with you about Chameleon. I think her character was a jab at how society thinks of women as a whole. Also keep in mind this was written in the late 70s. Even to this day, society attaches the stereotype that if a woman is beautiful she is also vain and, maybe not so much dumb but less intelligent, much less how women were thought of 30 years ago. I think the book points out the ridiculousness of this concept, which I appreciate.

Laura Chandler Yeah, society had different views when this was written. The sexism still annoys me, but I enjoy the book for its story and writing.

Margaret Moller I agree with your description of Bink. He was so immature, so obsessed with Chameleon's appearance, and when he finally told her that he could never tire of her because she could be many different girls, I nearly flung the book across the room.

Anthony McCormack I remember reading this when I was about 12 or so. I'm in my late 40's now and I felt like a re-read as I have kids about that age. I have fond memories of Ogre Ogre which is the 5th book in the Xanth series. After reading it again after all these years it's lost something. I look at things differently now walking with Christ. In this perspective the book reads a lot like an evolutionary tale. Humans breeding with mythical creatures and humans becoming extinct in Xanth. It's a pretty tall tale indeed. Though I've lived a colorful life and I walk very close with Christ I'm able to read this through very clear glasses. It's fairly entertaining tongue in cheek. I am slightly concerned how it will influence the young. It has some racy passages I agree but not overly so. I wish this world were less corrupt and that wholesome and purity reigned but that's not the world we live in. That being said, I feel that one has to expose their kiddos to life sometime. This book is written at a high level with a lot of terms that need to be looked up. My son 11, liked the book and probably didn't get the references and I'm thankful for that. I guess what I'm saying if you don't spend a lot of time with your kiddos teaching them good values and morals this could influence them in a negative way. I don't believe I'll read too many more in this series as my time is very valuable to me. For all it's worth it's a decent read. The main character has a moral thread to Xanth and its well being. He's not too bright but no idiot either. I suppose you could give it go. Your call.

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