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Amazon Best Books of the Month, November 2011: Sublimely curious, strangely serious, terrifyingly hilarious--the 14 new short stories by authors Stephen King, Lois Lowry, Walter Dean Myers and other bestselling storytellers in Chris Van Allsburg’s The Chronicles of Harris Burdick are a perfect match for the unexplained drawings that inspired them: the beloved, eerie black and white images, accompanied only by a title and caption, in The Mysteries of Harris Burdick, originally published by Allsburg in 1984. What could have been a basic writing exercise in the hands of these professionals unfolds as thoughtful, intriguing tales only masters could tell. With an introduction by Lemony Snicket, the stories close the loop on the mysterious drawings, but if they aren’t up to readers’ satisfaction, it can merely serve as another reason to gaze upon Allsburg’s layered pictures once again, 27 years later. --Alexandra Foster
“Engaging, with strokes of brilliance”—Kirkus
“This star-studded exercise in creative writing tests the wits of favorite authors and shows readers how even the big shots hone their craft.”—Publishers Weekly, starred review
“The stories embrace a range of styles and subjects, but, like their enigmatic and mysterious inspirations, each touches on the strange, the odd, and the fantastic.”—The Horn Book Magazine
“While the stories are distinct—by turns funny, sinister, and touching—they have much in common, sharing an arch tone, a curious metaphysicality, and some familiar folk-tale tropes, and the authors’ commitment to the original conceit gives the volume additional cohesion.”—Booklist
What a gigantic disappointment this was!
I have loved the Mysteries of Harris Burdick by Chris Van Allsburg for years. Read more