I bought this book at a used bookstore a long time ago, but never bothered to read it until recently. Then one boring afternoon I dusted it off my bookshelf. I'm so glad I did.
Diana Wynne Jones has become one of my favorite authors, and it all started with this book. Her writing is flowing and clever, her characters are lovable, and I kept finding myself smiling and laughing throughout the whole thing. I wasn't aware this volume was actually two shorter stories in one, and I was disappointed when the first ended because I simply didn't want it to. But then I fell in love with the second as much as I did the first.
The only complaint I have is Diana's anti-climatic endings. I feel they're too brief. However, it doesn't sway my love for this book at all. I'd recommend it to anyone, young or old, who enjoys magical worlds in feel-good fantasy.