Diana Wynne Jones

Start Free Trial

Christopher Davis

Download PDF PDF Page Citation Cite Share Link Share

Last Updated on June 7, 2022, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 155

["Witch's Business"] is typical of a kind of TV story style—two-dimensional, linear, endlessly this-happened-then-that-happened. Talk, events, background, acquire no reality…. There is a claim here for the actuality of evil, and I am not persuaded. However, the way in which a child's total world is conveyed is impressive: its obliviousness to adult ways and solutions. No authority but the child's own is ever recognized and adults are never appealed to, no matter how serious the trouble or great the need, as if such an appeal must be useless. When an adult does speak, it is as though a large empty building had uttered sensible sounds. The old "Our Gang" movies suggested the same sealed mini- or parallel world. Here it is frightening rather than comic, and that's good. (p. 22)

Christopher Davis, "There's the Devil to Pay," in The New York Times Book Review (© 1974 by The New York Times Company; reprinted by permission), May 5, 1974, pp. 22, 24, 26.∗

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access

Margery Fisher


John Fuller