Read Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman Free Online
Book Title: Practical Magic|
The author of the book: Alice Hoffman
ISBN 13: 9780425168462
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 543 KB
Date of issue: October 1st 1998
Read full description of the books Practical Magic:*3.75 stars*
I’m a little embarrassed to admit it wasn’t until I read my first Alice Hoffman novel last year (The Museum of Extraordinary Things) that I realized Practical Magic was more than just a swoon-worthy movie I’d watched a dozen times over—it’s also a book. With numerous viewings under my belt and the upcoming release of the prequel, The Rules of Magic, I figured now was as good of a time as any to dive in and give this a read. I mean how could I not, the book is always better than the movie, right?
Well, maybe not always. In this instance, I wouldn’t say the movie is necessarily better than the book, I'd say I prefer the movie version. Both are great stories, they’re just completely different.
Raised by their aunts and shunned by their classmates for being witches, sisters Gillian and Sally struggled to find their own versions of happiness. Gillian has always been the ‘wild child’, rearing to get out of Massachusetts and adamant that she wouldn’t be caught dead east of the Mississippi ever again; until she needs her older sister Sally to bail her out. After the death of her husband, Sally left the aunts behind and the little town they called home for a place where she could just fade into the background and raise her daughters; escaping the rumors, whispers and odd looks that met her everywhere she went. It’s Gillian’s unexpected arrival on Sally’s doorstep that stirs things up for everyone.
The major aspects of the storyline that carry over from the book to the movie are Jimmy’s demise, the gorgeous flowers that overtake the Owens’ yard and the appearance of Gary. Aside from that, there is no ‘one blue, one green eye’ incantation (boo!), no midnight margarita time with the aunts (they actually don’t play much of a role in the book) and there is less whimsy in regards to the magic and the curse that surrounds any man who falls in love with an Owens woman. If you remember from the movie, Sally opens a plant based cosmetics shop and neither sister shies away from using her powers or casting spells, which I thought added a fun dynamic to the mix. In this version, it felt like the sisters were always running from who they were and things just sort of happened all around them instead.
Despite the many issues that would typically derail my enjoyment—the complete lack of dialogue throughout much of the story, the non-existent chapters (this book was written in 4 large chunks instead of in a chapter format, which drove me a little mad at times) and the way the author tended to change perspectives mid-page or from one paragraph to the next—I still found myself enjoying my time with this version of the Owens women. There’s no denying this author has a unique way with words.
Read information about the authorAlice Hoffman was born in New York City on March 16, 1952 and grew up on Long Island. After graduating from high school in 1969, she attended Adelphi University, from which she received a BA, and then received a Mirrellees Fellowship to the Stanford University Creative Writing Center, which she attended in 1973 and 74, receiving an MA in creative writing. She currently lives in Boston and New York.
Hoffman’s first novel, PROPERTY OF, was written at the age of twenty-one, while she was studying at Stanford, and published shortly thereafter by Farrar Straus and Giroux. She credits her mentor, professor and writer Albert J. Guerard, and his wife, the writer Maclin Bocock Guerard, for helping her to publish her first short story in the magazine Fiction. Editor Ted Solotaroff then contacted her to ask if she had a novel, at which point she quickly began to write what was to become PROPERTY OF, a section of which was published in Mr. Solotaroff’s magazine, American Review.
Since that remarkable beginning, Alice Hoffman has become one of our most distinguished novelists. She has published over thirty novels, including two books of short fiction, and eight books for children and young adults. Her novel, HERE ON EARTH, an Oprah Book Club choice, was a modern reworking of some of the themes of Emily Bronte’s masterpiece Wuthering Heights. PRACTICAL MAGIC was made into a Warner film starring Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman. Her novel, AT RISK, which concerns a family dealing with AIDS, can be found on the reading lists of many universities, colleges and secondary schools. Hoffman’s advance from LOCAL GIRLS, a collection of inter-related fictions about love and loss on Long Island, was donated to help create the Hoffman Breast Center at Mt. Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, MA. BLACKBIRD HOUSE is a book of stories centering around an old farm on Cape Cod. Hoffman's other books include AQUARMARINE and INDIGO, novels for pre-teens, and The New York Times bestsellers THE RIVER KING, BLUE DIARY, THE PROBABLE FUTURE, and THE ICE QUEEN. GREEN ANGEL, a post-apocalyptic fairy tale about loss and love, was published by Scholastic and THE FORETELLING, a book about an Amazon girl in the Bronze Age, was published by Little Brown. Little Brown also published the teen novel INCANTATION, a story about hidden Jews during the Spanish Inquisition, which Publishers Weekly has chosen as one of the best books of the year. In January 2007, SKYLIGHT CONFESSIONS, a novel about one family’s secret history, was released on the 30th anniversary of the publication of Hoffman’s first novel.
Her most recent works include NIGHTBIRD, THE MUSEUM OF EXTRAORDINARY THINGS, THE DOVEKEEPERS, THE MARRIAGE OF OPPOSITES, and FAITHFUL.
Her next novel, a prequel to PRACTICAL MAGIC, will be released in 2017.
Hoffman’s work has been published in more than twenty translations and more than one hundred foreign editions. Her novels have received mention as notable books of the year by The New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, The Los Angeles Times, Library Journal, and People Magazine. She has also worked as a screenwriter and is the author of the original screenplay “Independence Day,” a film starring Kathleen Quinlan and Diane Weist. Her short fiction and non-fiction have appeared in The New York Times, The Boston Globe Magazine, Kenyon Review, Redbook, Architectural Digest, Gourmet, Self, and other magazines. Her teen novel AQUAMARINE was recently made into a film starring Emma Roberts.
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