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Diana Wynne Jones herself recommends reading Charmed Life first, followed by The Lives of Christopher Chant. Then Witch Week, The Magicians of Caprona and the short stories can be read in any order after that. (Since she made that comment, the books Conrad's Fate and The Pinhoe Egg have been published. They too can probably be read in any order after the recommended first two.
The Chronicles of Chrestomanci series includes Charmed Life and The Lives of Christopher Chant in Volume 1. Volume 2 contains Witch Week and The Magicians of Caprona, and Volume 3 is the collected short stories also known as Mixed Magics.
Description from book:
Magic is an everyday affair in the charmed world of this story, and you never know who may turn out to be a witch or enchanter. Like every book by Diana Wynne Jones, it bubbles with invention, and as the story unfolds the people in it grow and change with all the surprisingness of real life.
Charmed Life won the 1977 Guardian Award for Children's Books.
The Lives of Christopher Chant
Christopher often makes night-time trips to the Twelve Related Worlds. He thought there was nothing unusual about this until his Uncle Ralph hears of it and sends him on mysterious missions. One such mission reveals Christopher's very special magic powers - gifted with nine lives, he is destined to become the next Chrestomanci, the greatest magician in the country.
Christopher goes to study at the formidable Chrestomanci Castle, but even here he is not safe. Outside, the forces of evil are poised for attack and Christopher is losing his lives at an alarming rate. Can Christopher defeat his enemies alone, before his remaining lives run out?
REVIEW by 11-year old Elina Chin:
"I think that The Lives of Chistopher Chant book is the best book I have ever read. It's hilariously funny, and just so amazing. I couldn't believe that now I love them, that I had never heard of The Worlds of Chrestomanci series. The book is a wonderful story of Christoper Chant thinking he is just a normal boy with no magical power at all, and then he is amazed at the force of his magic when he gets rid of all his silver things. This book, I recommend to everyone who has not read this. You will laugh yourself to death, and follow the adventures of Christopher. "
The Magicians of Caprona
Description from book:
Either way, unless something is done quickly, there will be war and the city will be destroyed. Even Chrestomanci, the cleverest enchanter in the world, seems unable to help. Can anyone save Caprona?
Author's Note from book
REVIEW by Jessie
The book opens in the classroom of a private British school. The teacher has just received a note which reads "Someone in 5B is a witch". Charles Morgan has a knack for the evil eye and suspects that he may be that "someone". Terrified of his own power and of being burned for witchcraft, he grows desperate. Another student, Nan Pilgrim, cannot climb rope in gym, says ghastly things at dinners and is being harassed by an unusually persistent broomstick. Nan knows she is a witch, and is every bit as frantic as Charles.
Diana Wynne Jones turns a tale like nobody's business. She holds you tight with an unending stream of memorable characters and events. From an entire flock of birds (a parrot among them), to a rain of twelve hundred shoes, to several black marks, to a visit from Crestomanci, you don't want to skip a page of Witch Week.
REVIEW by 10-year