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The Lives of Christopher Chant (The Chrestomanci Series, Book 4) [Mass Market Paperback]

Diana Wynne Jones , Tim Stevens
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)

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Book Description

7 Mar 2005 The Chrestomanci Series (Book 4)

The childhood of Chrestomanci. Everything in this book happens at least twenty-five years before the story told in Charmed Life…

Discovering that he has nine lives and is destined to be the next ‘Chrestomanci’ is not part of Christopher’s plans for the future: he’d much rather play cricket and wander around his secret dream worlds. But he soon finds that destiny is difficult to avoid, and that having more than the usual number of lives is pretty inconvenient – especially when you lose them as easily as he does!

Then an evil smuggler, known only as The Wraith, threatens the ways of the worlds and forces Christopher to take action…


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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 319 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollinsChildren'sBooks; New edition edition (7 Mar 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0006755186
  • ISBN-13: 978-0006755180
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 12.8 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 727,690 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Diana Wynne Jones is recognised internationally as a major writer of fantasy and in 2007 received a LIFE ACHIEVEMENT AWARD at the World Fantasy Convention. She has also won the Mythopoeic Fantasy Award (twice) and the Guardian Award for CHARMED LIFE. Her books have been translated into more than eighteen languages, and her novel HOWL'S MOVING CASTLE was made into an animated film by Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki. Diana lives in Bristol with her husband, a professor of Early English literature.

Product Description

Amazon Review

Think of a world, almost like our own but a little more genteel and old-fashioned, where magic and witchcraft is as common as mathematics--but just as dangerous in the wrong hands. In The Lives of Christopher Chant--the fourth book in her Worlds of Chrestomanci series--Diana Wynne Jones succeeds in creating a vision of England close to our expectations of what should be, but subtly different enough to excite our interest and draw us into a strange new world of incredible reality and possibilities.

Christopher Chant is a dreamer, a boy who returns home each night with strange gifts from his nocturnal travels and leaves sand in his bed as proof. He's happy to play cricket and wander the world in secret--so having nine lives and being the next "Chrestomanci" is not part of his plans for the future. It's only when an evil smuggler known as The Wraith threatens his existence that the young Christopher truly takes hold of his destiny. He must try to halt his loss of lives and defeat evil before times runs out.

Set at least 20 years before the events as told in the first Chrestmanci novel, Charmed Life, The Lives of Christopher Chant is a detailed fantasy and wild adventure with dollops of humour that will challenge and intrigue every fan of this sequence of otherworldly novels.

Chrestomanci patrols the pages of three more full-length novels--Charmed Life, The Magicians of Caprona, Witch Week and in a collection of short stories, Mixed Magics. He is undoubtedly Diana Wynne Jones' finest creation and should not be missed. --John McLay

Review

“…Her hallmarks include laugh-aloud humour, plenty of magic and imaginative array of alternate worlds. Yet, at the same time, a great seriousness is present in all of her novels, a sense of urgency that links Jones’s most outrageous plots to her readers’ hopes and fears…”
Publishers Weekly


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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous book, couldn't put it down. 16 Feb 2000
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is an excellent book. I borrowed it from the library and began reading it one evening and read right through the night. I just couldn't put it down. I'd recommend it to any lover of fantasy books, young or old. I'm 19 and I still think it's among the best books I've ever read!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, loved it 14 Feb 2003
Format:Mass Market Paperback
No offence to charmed life but this is secretly my favourite of the Chrestomanci books. It has the best hero-Christopher Chant makes me laugh even when he's being rude and obnoxious and its obvious he's really a very nice person and a bit of a softy(besides Cat is wet and weedy and annoying).I also loved it for the extra insight it gives you into world 12a and how Chrestomanci got to be like he is in Charmed life and why Millie is Called Millie which is brilliant and very cool
It has a very clever plot all about other worlds and multiple lives and evil gangs of smugglers with a magical twist which is written with all the flair and wit I have come to expect from a Diana Wynne Jones book (eg the mallory towers spoof)and has some very neat peices of charachteristation (eg Tackroy and Millie-the-godess)which make it that little bit special and more enjoyable the climax is well measured and skillfull and keeps you constantly turning pages desperate to get to the next bit. This book is brilliant-read it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Love the book 7 Feb 2014
By Anon
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
It's such a great fantasy book and different and inspiring ideas, persuades you to read the rest of the books.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Chrestomanci for Prime Minister 6 Sep 2013
By Cathy
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
How fantastic that I can now get most of Diana Wynne Jones books on my Kindle - I'm having a brilliant time re-reading all my old favourites. In my opinion Diana was the most perfect writer ever - not a single wasted word and the way she wove a story - sheer genius. I recommend any of her books for children and adults alike.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant! 30 Aug 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I remembered reading this book as a child and have for years desperately tried to find the title and own one again - luckily I re-discovered it and it still was a fabulous read. For anyone wanting true magic - buy this book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars AMAZING 4 Aug 2013
By Poppy
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
One of my favourite childhood books, it never ceases to entice me, I love the whole series, they're all worth reading :)
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great book 12 Jun 2013
By sid
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A great read for anyone that has read charmed life and other chrestomanci books. I would recommend re reading charmed life and noticing some familiar characters...
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent novel 8 Jun 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I only started reading Diana Wynne Jones fairly recently, after reading a review of her work in a Sunday paper and subsequently discovering that several friends who also liked fantasy had read her books. I'm not her target audience as I'm a 48 year old woman, but I think my experience as a reader and a writer helps me to recognise how well-written these books are.

I've read the Chrestomanci series in a random order which has actually enhanced the experience for me. I think it is both brilliant and brave of her to write these novels as she has done, each taking a different central character, set in a different time, with recurring characters and the central theme of the multiple worlds and the charismatic and funny Chrestomanci at their heart. It was therefore fantastic to read this book which focuses on Christopher Chant's own childhood, and I thought it was excellent.

Not only is it written in a lively, well-paced style, but the characterisation is entertaining and psychologically insightful, and the story is full of imagination, wit, plot twists and turns, and highly inventive scenarios. I wish I'd had access to her novels when I was a teenager as I'd have loved them. They have elements of Dickens and Ursula Le Guin and a multitude of other writers, but they are distinctively Diana Wynne Jones and eminently readable. As a highly experienced reader I can work out where the plot is heading very early, but this doesn't detract from the pleasure of reading the novels. I particularly love the way she intertwines modern-day elements with more traditional fantasy features, and period details. Charming, highly enjoyable reads and highly recommended.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Chrestomanci books are my favorites of all time
This is a general review for the Chrestomanci series by Diana Wynne-Jones. I first read the Chrestomanci series when I was 23. Read more
Published 11 months ago by MRS D RYAN
5.0 out of 5 stars buy this for your children and then read it yourself
Lovely to see a girl in the part of the villain for once, instead of being the victim. Beautifull written and helps youngsters understand string theory simultaniously, what more... Read more
Published 12 months ago by Aly Gator
5.0 out of 5 stars if you need something now that harry potter has finished school
These are an excellent series of books and deserve to be more publicised if you liked the Harry Potter books you will enjoy these..... Read more
Published on 24 July 2011 by j
4.0 out of 5 stars A fast paced, inventive, magical book
The story of young Christopher Chant and how he grows in to both his magic and his inheritance. To Christopher the landscape beyond his bedroom which leads to multiple worlds... Read more
Published on 1 Jan 2011 by Asha Sahni
5.0 out of 5 stars Well written and a good addition to the Chrestomanci series
Love this story it is an amazingly insightful introduction for children about the theory of the Quantum Universe, but a great little bit of story telling about a boys adventure.
Published on 22 Aug 2010 by Kian2002
4.0 out of 5 stars An Inmaginative Book.
Its taken me about 3 years to actualy want to sit down and finish the series of books, that is not because 'The Chrestomanci Series' are bad, but because I was a rather lazy... Read more
Published on 13 April 2009 by Blue Shoes
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant book - no child should miss it
Recently ordered this for my nephew who loves it as much as I did (and still do). The best of the Chrestomanci series in my opinion. Read more
Published on 24 Mar 2008 by Luciana Montmorency
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