Note: If you’ve never read Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones, but plan to some day and don’t want things spoiled for you, in my chapter posts there could be spoilers.
“I feel ill,” he announced. “I’m going to bed, where I may die.” – Howl’s Moving Castle
Sophie finally finds Michael again and Howl’s upset about what the Witch of the Waste has done. I mentioned it in my last post she had done something terrible, but didn’t say what it was. I still won’t say as I don’t want to spoil everything. But I don’t blame Howl for being upset. If it were me, I’d be upset too.
And Calcifer is very upset too. Michael is worried about the Witch of the Waste, even having nightmares about her. He also decided to try keep her from coming into the castle, which ended in a funny scene. Not funny to Howl, but I laughed about it.
Sophie is annoyed that Howl has forgotten all about Lettie. Now that he has met his nephew’s teacher, that’s who he is after. It’s not that Sophie wants Howl and Lettie to be together, but I think it is more about how easily Howl forgot about Lettie, as if she never existed.
This is another chapter where Howl is a bit dramatic. Well, maybe more than a bit. Howl and Sophie get into a bit of an argument. Howl calling Sophie Mrs. Longnose (I think I’d be right to assume he is calling her that because of being nosy). And Sophie thinks all Howl does is go after women. He says he does other stuff too, but I don’t know if you can blame her for thinking he only chases women. Because it honestly does seem as if that is all Howl does.
Michael went out to get something for Howl and Sophie decides it’s time for her to visit Lettie. She can’t find the seven-league boots though.
There is a knock on the door and whoever it is won’t give up. They have been being careful about opening the door because of the Witch of the Waste. Calcifer said that it doesn’t seem to want to harm anyone. Sophie is curious and opens the door. A dog jumps right into the castle. A bit of a shock, but I think that’s better than a scarecrow or the Witch of the Waste.
And the next part is an interesting bit, but I’d rather not spoil it. I’ll just say the dog is unusual.
Howl has a cold, he’s upset and even crying. Sometimes you can’t help, but feel sorry for him. He’s not bad, really. But it’s easy to see how he could get on someone’s nerves. And other times, you think Howl might just need a good slap. I definitely think Howl is a character that causes mixed emotions. But overall, I like him. I mean, it wouldn’t be Howl’s moving castle without him, would it?
The chapter ends with Howl meeting the dog, who just seems to want to attach himself to Sophie, and Sophie not being very happy with Howl.