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Practical Magic

par Alice Hoffman

Autres auteurs: Voir la section autres auteur(e)s.

Séries: Practical Magic (3)

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4,3401331,975 (3.75)167
For more than two hundred years, the Owens women had been blamed for everything that went wrong in their Massachusetts town. And Gillian and Sally endured that fate as well; as children, the sisters were outsiders. Their elderly aunts almost seemed to encourage the whispers of witchery, but all Gillian and Sally wanted was to escape. One would do so by marrying, the other by running away. But the bonds they shared brought them back, almost as if by magic ...… (plus d'informations)
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Affichage de 1-5 de 132 (suivant | tout afficher)
I really loved this. It was so different than what I was expecting. It was the writing, the sentences themselves that were most magical of all. ( )
  TaraF | Mar 16, 2021 |
One star because the Goodreads rating system aptly sums up my feelings on it: did not like it. I only finished it because I have a uni class that requires I do so, else I would have DNF'd it last week. I didn't care for the writing, the characters, the plot, the setting, the use of 'magic' and 'witchcraft' (which seem questionable at best in this novel) and an overabundant reliance on using metaphor as magic in place of writing actual moments of fantasy. Thanks for reminding me why I don't read Alice Hoffman novels anymore, though! ( )
  sarahlh | Mar 6, 2021 |
Considering how much I adored the previous novels of Alice Hoffman's that I've read (especially the prequel to this novel), I fully expected to be swept away once again. I guess the old adage rings true once more: assumptions make an ass out of you and me (or however it goes), because I was just a touch disappointed by this book. Hoffman brings her signature intrigue and character-driven narrative to the table, but I just wasn't able to connect with sisters Sally and Gillian Owens. Her storytelling was a touch more removed (like we're being told the story, rather than being in the story as it unfolds), so I rarely, if ever, truely felt like we were getting inside the sisters' heads. It also doesn't help matters that we're automatically expecting the same story as in the film adaptation (even though this isn't realistic), so when the story skews a bit off kilter we're constantly left wondering why. That being said, the story was still softly magical (even for its occasional violence and cruelty) and was a decent opener for Halloween month. I'm very glad that Hoffman went back and wrote the prequel about the aunts, though, since she's bringing many more years of writing experience to the table when she delves into their deeply magical story. And now we have her latest novel (an even earlier prequel) to get into later on! ( )
  JaimieRiella | Feb 25, 2021 |
Book on CD narrated by Christina Moore

The Owens women have always been known for their beauty and have always had magical powers. But when sisters Gillian and Sally are orphaned, they are taken in by their older aunts and endure years of taunting and teasing in their Massachusetts town. They turn their backs on magic and set out on their own. Years later, Gillian is twice divorced and living in Tucson with a very bad man. Older sister Sally is widowed with two young daughters of her own, settled in upstate New York. Then one rainy night, Gillian appears on Sally’s doorstep … with a dead man in her car. And things get weirder and weirder from that point forward.

I remember the movie starring Nicole Kidman and Sandra Bullock – vaguely. I remember I thought little of it and quickly forgot it. I resisted reading anything by Hoffman as a result. But a particular challenge drew me to this work at this time, and I have to say that I’m glad I read it.

Hoffman is a great storyteller and she does a marvelous job weaving this “fairy tale for adults.” Her characters and much more complex that I was expecting. Like all fairy tales there is a lesson here. Hoffman deals with sibling rivalry, with forgiveness, with the pull of family and the desire for independence.

Christina Moore does a splendid job reading the audiobook. I loved being read to by her! ( )
  BookConcierge | Feb 22, 2021 |
[Review written by my high school self]
I used to love the movie for this book, and I didn’t even know until after I had seen it that it was originally in book form. After finally getting a copy of the book and reading it, something magical happened: I didn’t know which one I liked better. Usually, having to decide favorites between the book and the movie is very easy. Except in the case of Grisham's The Pelican Brief, I almost always prefer the book versions. In some cases (as with [b:Gone with the Wind|18405|Gone With The Wind|Margaret Mitchell|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1166913011s/18405.jpg|3358283] and Scarlett), I simply refuse to see the movie, while in other cases (like The Great Gatsby and Jurassic Park) I prefer the book hands-down though the movie versions are certainly more than tolerable. With Hoffman’s Practical Magic, I just don’t know.

Part of the reason for this anomaly in my reading life may be the fact that the movie and book bear little resemblance to each other. Here is what is in the book that is also in the movie: the names of the characters (which in itself is a bit skewered), and the fact that this all has to do with witches, family, and magic. That’s about it. Other than that, even the basic plotline is very different. I can understand how the movie might need to condense the plotline to fit its regular two hours, but this plotline has been almost completely altered.

Unlike the movie, the book gives more equal attention to each of the sister protagonists, Sally and Gillian. This was both a good and a bad thing for me, due to my fascination with the characters and my partiality towards actress Sandra Bullock, who plays Sally in the movie version. The aunts, who are prominently figured in the movie as well, appear only as absent characters throughout most of the book. The children, Antonia and Kylie (their names are switched in the movie), are much older than their elementary school-age movie counterparts, and have very deep and intriguing characterizations that are lacking from the movie. Overall, the book does a better job of observing and presenting the importance, history, and closeness of sisterly relationships.

Hoffman’s writing has an utterly absorbing lyrical and poetic quality to it that I greatly admire. I ate this book up, partly because I was pushing for the protagonist Sally’s vindication (a point made in such a focused and concentrated manner in the movie), and partly because Hoffman’s writing is just superb and catching. I swallowed down pieces of this book for hours at a time, and would have to literally shake myself out of the mood of it all if I were so RUDELY interrupted. =)

The “magic” is of a different kind in the book, less magical in some senses, and focusing more on clairvoyance and intuition, a point much easier made and mystified in book form. Hoffman takes full charge of this, infusing this in every sentence of her text, and making the readers literary clairvoyants in their own sense. The predictability and unpredictability of this story makes it a book that can be read as I did in one gulp as I did or in a strolling leisurely fashion without losing anything of the book’s power or meaning.

Without a doubt, the movie has tainted, and at the same time, enhanced my reading of the book, so much so that I don’t even have a suggestion as to which medium persons should expose themselves to first. Should you read the book after seeing the movie, though, there are some things you should keep in mind. Certainly, one of the main things to remember is that Hoffman’s Gillian is no Nicole Kidman. Another thing to remember is that the movie, because of its required brevity, only touches upon the deep psychological implications and character insight of the book. Most importantly, the book characters don’t get wasted on midnight margaritas and dance around the dinner table to Harry Nillson’s “Coconut” song.
( )
  irrelephant | Feb 21, 2021 |
Affichage de 1-5 de 132 (suivant | tout afficher)
If there is an author north of the border who has managed to successfully translate the language of magic realism into the American idiom, it is Alice Hoffman.
 
Indeed, the title of Ms. Hoffman's latest novel, "Practical Magic," says it all: if you are going to believe in magic, it had better have palpable and easily comprehensible results.
 

» Ajouter d'autres auteur(e)s (5 possibles)

Nom de l'auteur(e)RôleType d'auteurŒuvre ?Statut
Hoffman, Aliceauteur(e) principal(e)toutes les éditionsconfirmé
Jones, CherryReaderauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé
Lindgren, Nilleauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé
Moore, ChristinaNarrateurauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé

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For every evil under the sun,
There is a remedy, or there is none.
If there be one, seek till you find it;
If there be none, never mind it.

MOTHER GOOSE
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For more than two hundred years, the Owens women have been blamed for everything that has gone wrong in town.
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Math plus desire equals who you are.
Grief is all around; it's just invisible to most people.
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For more than two hundred years, the Owens women had been blamed for everything that went wrong in their Massachusetts town. And Gillian and Sally endured that fate as well; as children, the sisters were outsiders. Their elderly aunts almost seemed to encourage the whispers of witchery, but all Gillian and Sally wanted was to escape. One would do so by marrying, the other by running away. But the bonds they shared brought them back, almost as if by magic ...

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