author · Book Review · Craft Tuesdays · Uncategorized

It’s Not Just About Magic – Howl’s Moving Castle


This isn’t just about walking across the sky. From a door that leads to different predetermined destinations, to a ring that can point a person in the right direction, and a fire demon that powers the castle to move across great distances. Besides those mentioned, there are many more charming elements contained within Diana Wynne JonesHowl’s Moving Castle besides the charismatic protagonists, Sophie Hatter and Howl Jenkins Pendragon.


First published in 1986, Howl’s Moving Castle is the first of a trilogy of books.

Here’s a summary:

Sophie Hatter lives in a land where many fairy tales are accepted as true and the moving castle at the outskirts of town is just another part of normal life. However, Sophie’s normal life is turned upside down when the Witch of the Waste visits Sophie’s small hat shop and puts a curse on her, turning her into an old woman. Now Sophie must leave her hat shop in search for a cure for her curse. Along the way Sophie meets a fire demon, Calcifer, and the wizard, Howl, who is rumoured to eat women’s hearts. Will Sophie ever be free of her curse?

Check out the activities we have for you this coming week.

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On Craft Tuesday, you will get a chance to create your own mini fire demon, Calcifer!


The book was adapted into an award-winning animated film in 2004 by Studio Ghibli, famous for many animated films such as Spirited Away, My Neighbour Totoro, Princess Mononoke and Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea.


Don’t miss out on the movie screening on Thursday!



Books and films aren’t just for entertainment. There are always lessons to be learnt and that applies to Howl’s Moving Castle as well. One of the most important is…

“Appearances don’t matter, what you have inside does.”

Sophie is cursed to become an old woman. The Wizard Howl is a selfish narcissist. There is continuous surprise in discovering that the exterior appearance of the characters does not always coincide with their nature. There are many factors that can change the how a person looks, but you just have to trust the good that is inside of a person no matter how they may look.


Do look forward to a week of wizardry and the fantastic, and do remember that there’s a  quiz on Friday!

Book Review

Book Review: The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

Many pupils have been spotted reading horror novels. Why don’t you try reading The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman?


Did you know that Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book (2008) about a baby boy who is found and brought up by the dead in a cemetery was inspired by The Jungle Book?  However, Gaiman added a dark twist to his story.

On the night Jack murders a family in their beds, their toddler runs out into the night, pursued by the murderer, and finds his way into a cemetery. The ghosts there chase away the murderer and, after much argument, decide to raise the boy. They name him Nobody, Bod for short. As long as Bod stays in the cemetery they can protect him from Jack, who is still searching for him. But a growing boy, even one who is granted the Freedom of the Graveyard, eventually needs contact with the living world — and it is the world of the living that holds the most danger for Bod.

Book review by Matt Berman of Common Sense Media

Here’s an official book trailer and a reading of the first chapter by author, Neil Gaiman, himself!


author · Book Review

The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling

It’s the last week of school and here’s what the library has lined up for you!

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The Jungle Book, written by English author, Rudyard Kipling, has had many adaptations since it was first published in 1894. That was 124 year ago! 

The Jungle Book tells the story of little Mowgli, a village boy who falls into the hands of a pack of wolves who raise him as their own in the Indian jungle. As he matures he starts to understand the ‘Law of the Jungle’ and the book follows his many adventures alongside the myriad creatures around him. Those include Baloo the bear and Bagheera the black panther, who become his tutors and protectors.

Some of the many adaptations of The Jungle Book are Disney’s 1967 animated version, and its most recent is the 2016 live-action remake. Watch the trailer below.

Film synopsis:
The film adaptation tells the story of Mowgli, an orphaned human boy who, guided by his animal guardians, sets out on a journey of self-discovery while evading the threatening Shere Khan.

The movie will be screening this week, and all library activities will be related to the series.

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So join Mowgli and his animal friends on his journey this week at the library!

Book Review

Book Review: The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick

Here’s a book review of Brian Selznick’s The Invention of Hugo Cabret, a book that has been adapted into a movie!

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When Hugo’s father, a clockmaker, is killed in a fire, Hugo is taken in by his uncle. They live together in a hidden room inside the walls of the Paris train station, where it’s the uncle’s job to maintain the station clocks — until one night he disappears. Now Hugo is alone, still living inside the station walls, stealing to survive, and maintaining the clocks so no one will know his uncle is gone.

Hugo also works on an automaton, a mechanical man, that his father was trying to restore. He steals parts from a toy shop in the station. When he’s caught, the mean store owner takes away his father’s notebook and threatens him with arrest. But the old man’s hidden past and Hugo’s are intertwined, and the secret message hidden in the automaton’s workings is only the beginning.

Book review by Matt Berman of Common Sense Media

More details on the book and where you can borrow it from can be found here.

Here’s the exciting trailer for the movie adaptation, Hugo.

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Do remember that our library is closed for this week! All the best for your exams, Beacons!

Book Review

Book Review: Sherlock Sam & the Fiendish Heist in London

Ms Valerie Cheng from Singapore Book Council gives a book review on Sherlock Sam & the Fiendish Heist in London.


Authors Adan Jimenez and Felicia Low-Jimenez have another winner in their latest book Sherlock Sam & the Fiendish Heist in London.  This time, the intrepid detective Samuel Tan Cher Lock a.k.a. Sherlock Sam, Watson and the Supper Club join hands with the Fiendish Mastermind in a battle of wits against a mysterious and equally masterful enemy.  Readers will be transported from sunny Singapore all the way to literary London, home of Sherlock Holmes at 221B Baker Street and the Tate Modern.

Readers will love the strategy and counter strategy of our masterful hero and Watson’s intelligence and wit.  Good emerges victorious over evil; and the warm camaraderie among the members of the supper club contrasts starkly with the cold master-minion relationship of the Fiendish Mastermind and his team of helpers. There is a lot to learn and enjoy.  I thoroughly recommend it.

Sherlock Sam goes all the way to the home of Sherlock Holmes? Wow! If this book review has caught your interest, borrow a copy today!