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THE VENGEANCE OF THE WITCH-FINDER by John Bellairs

THE VENGEANCE OF THE WITCH-FINDER

By John Bellairs (Author) , Brad Strickland (Author)

Age Range: 11 - 13

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1993
ISBN: 0140375112
Publisher: Dial

A second posthumous Bellairs adventure (see Ghost in the Mirror, p. 296), again seamlessly completed by the author of Dragon's Plunder (1992) and other fantasies. When Lewis Barnevelt and his uncle Jonathan (last met in The Letter, the Witch and the Ring, 1976) stop over at the family manor in Sussex during a tour of Europe, Lewis accidentally releases a malevolent spirit, imprisoned since the 17th century. Later, the two are seized by the ghost of Malachiah Pruitt, a Puritan "witch-finder" defeated by a Barnevelt ancestor, now back for revenge. The atmosphere and supernatural effects here are particularly eerie, even for Bellairs; beyond the usual nightmares, portents, apparitions, and peculiar old documents, Lewis must contend with being hustled off to a hidden torture chamber and a vicious invisible monster, and barely escapes a maze with twigs that grasp like fingers and bleed when broken. With the help of Bertram, a blind friend, plus a particularly potent amulet (a nail from the True Cross, no less), Lewis banishes Pruitt and his monster and discovers an ancient golden crown. Formulaic, but satisfyingly hair-raising. (Fiction. 11-13)