The Chronicles of Chrestomanci

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Author: Jones, Diana Wynne
Grades: 4 - 8
In a magical alternate universe the Chrestomanci is a person with nine lives charged with policing all magic done in the world. These hefty books describe the rise of various Chrestomanci's and/or magical adventures that involve the Chrestomanci which are often dangerous and involve good guys vs. bad guys magical violence. Each book has two self-contained stories in it.

Comments are explicit and detailed and are intended for parents to use to determine acceptability for their children. Please read comments - do not rely on ratings alone. Books are reviewed to the best of our abilities, we apologize for any errors.

Review Date Title Rating Mini Series Series No. Comments
08/14/2022 The Chronicles of Chrestomanci Volume 1 Problematic 1
This book is really two books in one. The first, "Charmed Life" describes how an orphaned boy came to be the ward of the Chrestomanci, the man charged with policing all magic in their alternate universe. His sister turns out to be evil and siphons magic off of her brother for nefarious purposes. She eventually goes to an alternative universe and her replacement who arrives from a different universe is much nicer. A few mentions of one word xmas and Halloween. Girl has complete lack of hakaras hatov for guardian who took her in and provides well for her and is rude to everyone around her "shut up you frog faced girl" (to a servant girl trying to help her). Magical sister threatens brother that if he tells her the ending she will turn his "underpants to ice". At church magical girl is bored and causes the figures in the stained glass window to start beating each other up and causing a major disruption to the church service (described, but no clear religion). The second story, "The Lives of Christopher Chant" is how the current Chrestomanci came to his role, starting from his childhood where he was raised by parents with a dysfunctional marriage (described in great detail) and a criminal uncle who manipulated the innocent boy to help him in his smuggling ring. Little boy is bored when his mother is meeting with her friends so he starts rolling from lady to lady so he can see what their legs look like under their petticoats. Mentions of gods and temples in alternate lands and descriptions of their "powers" and magical abilities. Brief discussion with goddess if xmas is for heathens or if the heathens are those who worship gods. At the castle the boy is given the book Arabian NIghts "with all of the dirty bits taken out".a
Language
stupid, shut up, idiot, it's hell, drat, just one more damned thing (p176 end chapter 12), weird, idiotic, giving me the creeps, darn it, this is a damned nuisance (p327 beginning chapter 5), Don't be an ass, make damned sure (p369 beginning of chapter 8), freakish, freak show