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Which Witch [Unabridged] [Paperback]

Eva Ibbotson
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
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Book Description

5 Jun 2009

Arriman the Awful, feared Wizard of the North, has decided to marry. But his wife must be a witch of the darkest powers . . .

A sorcery competition is held to discover which witch is the most potent and fiendish, and glamorous Madame Olympia conjures up a thousand plague-bearing rats! Belladonna, the white witch, desperately wants to be a wicked enchantress, but her magic produces flowers instead of snakes. How can she become more devilish than all the other witches?

'Eva Ibbotson weaves a magic like no other. Once enchanted, always enchanted.' Michael Morpurgo

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Which Witch + Dial a Ghost
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Product details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books; Unabridged edition (5 Jun 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0330398008
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330398008
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.4 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 33,179 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Eva Ibbotson is one of the best-loved children's writers in the world.

Her first children's novel was published in 1975, and her most famous story, JOURNEY TO THE RIVER SEA, won the Smarties Gold Prize in 2001.

Her books have been shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal, the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize, the Roald Dahl Funny Prize, and many other literary awards.

Eva died at the age of 85 in 2010

Product Description


"A zestful adventure, perfect for fans of HARRY POTTER."
-- "School Library Journal" --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Book Description

'Find me a witch!' cried Arriman the Awful, feared Wizard of the North. Arriman has decided to marry. His wife must be a witch of the darkest powers - but which witch will she be? To find the most fiendish, he holds a spell-casting competition. Glamorous Madame Olympia performs the terrifying Symphony of Death and conjures up a thousand plague-bearing rats. The magic of gentle Belladonna, the white witch, goes hopelessly wrong. She produces perfumed flowers instead of snakes. And bats roost in her golden hair instead of becoming blood-sucking vampires. Shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Strange and funny story of a makeover :) 7 May 2006
This book might be just the right thing to buy for your kids while they are waiting for the next Harry Potter book to be released. It has magic, and a weird plot, but it is full of innocence and good fun. I really think that "Which witch" will engage the attention of even the most active kid, and who knows, maybe even that of an adult who is tired to death of "serious things" and needs a respite.

The plot is simple. Arriman the Awful, a powerful evil wizard, has to marry. Unfortunately, he isn't in love, but he is all the same aware of the fact that he needs to have kids to prolong his legacy of terror. The solution Arriman finds is quite brilliant: he organizes a contest in evil witchcraft, the prize for the winner being his hand in marriage. Of course, the local witches are extremely happy with the news, and begin to prepare for the competition. One of them, Belladona, is in fact profoundly in love with Arriman, and would do almost anything to marry him. There is a little problem, though: Belladona is a white witch :)

I think that I have already given you enough details to have an idea of what this book is about. All in all, I believe that this book is excellent, and that your kids (and maybe you?) are highly likely to have enormous fun with the antics of Belladona and her friends in their struggle to turn her into a black witch. Read it, and enjoy!!

Belen Alcat
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Which Witch? 17 May 2006
I had to read this book in my 2nd year at high school, now 8 years on I find myself picking it up again. It is still brilliant, and I think, is the kind of read you take away with you when you just want to relax and enjoy a book without thinking too hard at it all. Serious adult books are all well and good but this is a must have if u have a spare few hrs to just longue around. It is funny and well written and i know the young (and the young at heart) will enjoy reading this book time and time again.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The magic is not just in the title! 22 Sep 1999
By A Customer
As a child I prided myself on being a hardened horror afficionado,convincing the babysitter that The Hammer House of Horror was more educational than Bagpuss. Children's fiction was therefore to be avoided at all costs, except when under duress by my primary teacher to read the obligatory titles of the out-dated syllabus. Whitch Witch immediately sounded promising, and although it didn't offer up the much anticipated stake burning extravaganza that my young mind had so vividly imagined, it was the most enjoyable and memorable book of those formative years.Witches casting spells inspired by jealousy and ambition, each trying to out-do the other in their quest to marry the most handsome and powerful wizard of them all; sometimes ludicrous, often hilarious and always immensely enjoyable.....with a fairy-tale ending that even a cynical 8 year old re-read well into her teens! Oh how I want to be Belladonna, erm, I mean wanted!!! This book will weave a spell on you which will outlast your belief in Santa Claus tenfold!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars magical 16 July 2010
A Kid's Review
the thing i love about this book so much is that it starts good and then gets better and better..........
Arriman the awful, wizard of the north is looking for a wife! a competition must be held to see who is the most powerful black witch, belladonna is a white witch and one of the competitors and altogether there are seven hopeful witch's wanting to win,but who will........................
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Funniest Children's Book I Have Read for Years 24 April 2009
I read Which Witch to my eight-year-old son over a period of a week, and we laughed so much every night. It is brilliantly witty, amusing and so humane as well. The old witch's familiar cloud of flies in a biscuit tin will live on with me forever. And as for Doris the octopus stuffed into a bucket for easy transport. Wonderful wonderful fun. Read it to your children, or even to yourself. I don't know why Eva Ibbotson is not a superstar - better than anyone and you see her ideas picked up constantly by subsequent writers.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Frightfully funny! 14 April 2003
Arriman the Awful, a wizard of great power and darkest evil, has grown bored with his life. Realizing that he needs a son to carry on the cause of darkness and evil, Arriman searches for a suitable wife. Only a witch of the darkest evil will serve, but which witch? The obvious course of action is found, a competition in evil witchcraft, with the witches in formal evening gowns!
Among the witches, though, there is one who nobody expects to win, the pretty and (most shockingly) white witch Belladonna. Alone among the witches, Belladonna has fallen in love with Arriman. When the exceedingly evil Madame Olympia, who has already married and done away with five husbands, Belladonna realizes that she must be blacker than she has ever dreamed of being if she is going to win the contest and save Arriman. But how?
This book is frightfully funny (pardon the pun)! The characters are interesting and funny; the storyline slides along keeping you glued to the pages. This is a great book, suitable for all ages. I highly recommend this book.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ENchantingly funny and thrilling 12 April 2002
This send-up of a beauty-contest had my children rolling around with laughter. Arriman the Awful has to find a wife, given that his successor has failed to turn up. Naturally, she must be as terrifying as possible - but the one witch among the hideous and grisly crones who assemble who really loves him is Belladonna, who can't help being good, beautiful and kind.
Glorious fun - no child of 6 or over will be disappointed.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars awesome
Awesome I loved every minute of reading it
Published 3 months ago by shelley coote
5.0 out of 5 stars funny
a lovely children's book - very unusual, and funny, and intriguing
(i had to write nine more words before being allowed to submit, which is nonsens, so don't mind them.)
Published 9 months ago by friedel paur
5.0 out of 5 stars witches galore
my small daughter really loved this, she read loads to, so if she says its good then believe her and buy a copy for your kids

Published 11 months ago by michaelgcasey
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
I really enjoyed this book. I think it is a really good story and that it is very easy understand. I liked every thing about this book.
Published 14 months ago by Aisling Kendall
5.0 out of 5 stars About the book
It was a adventurous and it was very magic my favourite characters were arrinman and belladona. It was a good book.
Published 16 months ago by mrs l g hawthorne
5.0 out of 5 stars Delighted granddaughter
Same review as for "Dial a Ghost" - an utterly charming and beautifully written book to delight both children and adults alike. Read more
Published 22 months ago by J. M. Davies
5.0 out of 5 stars Which Witch?
A while ago I bought a pack of 10 Eve Ibbotson ghost books. We have read several and thoroughly enjoyed them. Read more
Published on 27 Mar 2012 by The Zocat
5.0 out of 5 stars Nostalgic!
I just wanted to say that I am now a 30 something and remember reading this book when i was in my early teens! Read more
Published on 15 Dec 2011 by GG020
4.0 out of 5 stars A great fun story
Good fun childrens book with dark witches and wizards told in light funny way.

Set in the run up to Halloween with lots of magic and a good witch who desperately wants... Read more
Published on 17 Jan 2011 by rachelcreative
5.0 out of 5 stars Which Witch - brilliantly funny and imaginative. Not just for...
Don't let the cover put you off. A great story for adults as well as for age 8 upwards children. I'm a grown up and read it cover to cover non stop as I was so engrossed. Read more
Published on 12 Oct 2010 by Happy and Smiling
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