A to Z Challenge - Favourite Books - In the Shadows, Figure

In the Shadows, Figure by John Bellairs.

Okay, that was a bit of a cheat on the title. But I just had to get John Bellairs in there. I don't remember when I first read his books, but I must have picked them up from the Scholastic book orders in grade school. I loved Scholastic, and always remember how exciting it was to flip through the catalogue and try to narrow down my choices based on what looked interesting and how many books my parents said I could order.

I even took a photo of the building last time we were in New York City:

But back to Bellairs (and the wonderful illustrations by Edward Gorey). How can you not love books with titles like The House With a Clock in its Walls; The Letter, the Witch, and the Ring; The Treasure of Alpheus Winterborn; The Curse of the Blue Figurine; The Mummy, the Will and the Crypt; The Spell of the Sorcerer's Skull; The Dark Secret of Weatherend; The Lamp from the Warlock's Tomb; and so on.

As I keep doing while writing these posts, I've just discovered a Bellairs book I haven't read - and there's a Tolkien connection! Here's the Wikipedia detail:

"Bellairs undertook The Face in the Frost while living in Britain and after reading J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. ... Bellairs said of his third book: 'The Face in the Frost was an attempt to write in the Tolkien manner. I was much taken by The Lord of the Rings and wanted to do a modest work on those lines. In reading the latter book I was struck by the fact that Gandalf was not much of a person - just a good guy. So I gave Prospero, my wizard, most of my phobias and crotchets. It was simply meant as entertainment and any profundity will have to be read in.'"

I've got to read it now!


Misha Gericke said…
Never heard about it, but The Face in the Frost sounds really good. ^_^
Donna Martin said…
Hi...I'm hopping over from the A to Z challenge. Lovely blog...good luck with the challenge!

Donna L Martin
nutschell said…
I've never heard of these books but I sure will check them out!

Happy A-Zing!
S.P. Bowers said…
I loved the scholastic book orders! It was so hard to choose what I wanted.
Never heard of this author, but he sounds good!
Anonymous said…
Those are great titles. I haven't read John Bellairs...yet.

I might have to cheat a little for a future post. :)
Jemi Fraser said…
I don't know this author either! My wishlist is getting longer... :)

And I cheated on a couple of my titles too!
Melissa said…
Haven't read it, but it sounds interesting. Nice post! :)
Angela Brown said…
I must agree, the titles of those books alone are very eye catching. Will have to check them out. Thanks for mentioning them...and that every so slight cheat was and is easily ignored. :-)
Jeremy Bates said…
I used to love Scholastic! You're right, one had to really narrow down the order because there seemed to be so many interesting titles. Then, just when you thought you could order the other books that you wanted at a later time, they would not be there!
Hi Deniz. I haven't read him! Scholastic books are great. Still going strong but the ebook revolution is hitting schools too.

Trisha said…
ooh, sounds like a fun author! Going to add him to my TBR :)
Deniz Bevan said…
I haven't been able to find The Face in the Frost on Amazon, Misha! Hopefully second hand?

Thank you Donna!

Hope you like 'em nutschell!

I miss them, Sara and Jeremy! I wish I still got the catalogue :-)

He is, Tyrean! His stories are always fun.

I hope you like them when you read them, Medeia!

My wishlist is way too long, Jemi and Trisha!

Thanks, Melissa!

Aww, thanks for ignoring the cheat, Angela :-)

I can't picture reading ebooks as a kid, Denise. Can you really curl up with an ereader in the same way?
Jamie Gibbs said…
The Treasure of Alpheus Winterborn sounds like it would make for an awesome Steampunk novel :)

Fellow A-Z Buddy
Doing a monumental blog catch-up
Mithril Wisdom
Deniz Bevan said…
You're right, Jamie, it does!

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