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Lucinda's Secret (Spiderwick Chronicles, Book 3) Hardcover – Deckle Edge, October 1, 2003
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Fresh from near-fatal goblin and troll attacks in the previous book (The Seeing Stone, the children are torn over whether to hang onto their long-lost great-great-uncle's book or to turn it over to the menacing faeries. Thimbletack--the house brownie who's transmogrified into an angry "boggart"--has lost his patience with the kids, and he starts subjecting Jared to increasingly nasty pranks. Hoping that Lucinda might know something about Uncle Arthur's fate (or at least have some advice on how to fend off the faeries), the three children talk their mom into a trip to the asylum for a visit--but there they learn their situation might be even more dangerous than they imagined. (And, as readers of the series know, the kids already thought they were in hot water.)
Holly Black doesn't dish up the action quite as fast as she did in the first two books, but Spiderwick fans won't be disappointed: We learn more Spiderwick family history, we get an ominous glimpse of events to come, and Tony DiTerlizzi introduces a few new faeries to the menagerie in his ever-evocative pen and ink--including a special treat, the Cheshire-esque phooka. ("You've lost your uncle! How careless.") Ages 6 to 10) --Paul Hughes
From School Library Journal
Elaine E. Knight, Lincoln Elementary Schools, IL
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Top Customer Reviews
After moving into the Spiderwick Estate with their divorced mother, the three siblings found the secret library of Arthur, who vanished several years ago, leaving only his comprehensive guide to the faery world that surrounds his home. It is this world that the Grace children are gradually getting to know, and already they have a couple of brownie/boggart and hobgoblin friends and an injured griffin in the barn. But it just so happens that after centuries of abuse and destruction, the faeries aren't so keen on humans learning about their world once more, and so are out to stop them by any means possible. Mallory and Simon are rather keen on ridding themselves of the Guidebook and thereby getting themselves out of trouble, but Jared, who feels the study of faeries is the only thing he's been really good at refuses, and instead suggest visiting great-aunt Lucinda, the daughter of Arthur Spiderwick, who might have some answers to their questions.
From the visit at the old person's home to the discovery of an old map in Arthur's libary, the three children decide to set out and discover what actually happened to Arthur. This leads them to the riddle-speaking Phooka (one of the book's best characters yet!) and the court of the noble, beautiful, but extremely suspicious elves, who are the guardians of the realm of faery, and not at all pleased that humans have breached their domain...
I am loving the Spiderwick Chronicles, and personally can't wait until the next installment "The Ironwood Tree" is published, as it promises even more faeries, including dwarfs! As the poem at the back of "Lucinda's Secret" says: "And beneath the old quarry, just outside of town, lives a king with a kingdom, but who wears the crown?" It is almost cruel that publishers make us wait so long.
To a point, "Lucinda's Secret" was not quite up to the success of the two previous books, as the story was quite clearly split into two: the visit to the nursing home, and the trek into the faery realms. Perhaps if they had found the map earlier, and shown it to Lucinda, the book would have felt more fluid. As such, I'm getting a tad concerned at the outcome of this series - its been established that there's only five books in the series, but so far more and more characters and situations are being introduced, with nothing really getting resolved. On top of the theme of the children inflicting on the secret world of the faeries (a theme I thought was more than enough to carry the series along) there were hints here that a good and evil plot strand is arriving soon, with mention of one Mulgarath the ogre gathering malevolent forces to him. Of course, its rather useless worrying about it yet, but I'd hate to be disappointed in this great series, and the sheer shortness of the books (I read "Lucinda's Secret in half an hour) means that there's a lot of ground to cover in the remaining two books, and I'd hate to see Thimbletack, Hogsqueal, Byron or the Phooka shortchanged in wrapping up the story.
Likewise, the promised "Lucinda's Secret" wasn't so much of a startling revelation than simply a little background to the Spiderwick family and reassurting what the children already know - not much of a secret! However, the faery lore that Holly Black places within the context of the story is truly wonderful - any long time scholars of faeries will delight in seeing the dangers of faery food, the technique of wearing one's clothes worn inside out, the faery use of stray sods and the power imbued in a name put to good use. And Tony DiTerlizzi's illustrations are an absolute delight. The beautifully clear and intricate pictures perfectly capture what the text describes, and creates what I consider the *real* nature of faery - not a silly, pretty little world, but quirky, intricate, and a little dangerous. Any fans of Brian Froud will adore Tony DiTerlizzi's drawings, and I myself almost wept with delight at his depiction of the unicorn - no sweet little pony, but small and stunted, with lion's paws and tail and a goat's beard: exactly how the original unicorns were depicted.
Finally, the presentation of the book is stunning, especially in regard to the way the author creates it as a 'real story', with the children of the story actually writing to the authors with their story (and their letter is included!) The Spiderwick Chronicles are perfect for bringing lore of faery to a new generation, and I can't wait for the next book!
Great writting and love how they present the books and the style of the book. Very nice. I like that they encourage kids to write their OWN stories about fairies and creatures in their imagination. A series every child should have in their book collection.
My opinion is that he should get rid of the book because Mallory and Simon don’t like to get pranked on.
No one likes to be pranked and they get mad, sometimes at the person.
In the beginning Mallory and Simon and Jared was at their house, when Thimbletack said you must do something to keep it safe from Mulgarath so he doesn’t turn everything into stone.
I thought in the story that was good on page 22 was when they went to talk to their aunt Lucinda.
I thought in the book, Aunt Lucinda is ugly but in the movie she was not old and ugly, she was kind of old and kind of young but I liked it.
In the middle of the story Aunt Lucida said that she never knew that the book was in the house she thought that her dad took the book. But she told some stuff to Jared and Mallory and Simon. But then Mallory and Simon and Jared saw some faeries but then a fairy came to Jared and then Aunt Lucida said not for them because if you eat it you will not eat human food. I think no one should eat fairy food but Aunt Lucida because she is getting older and she is nice and people thinks she is crazy. In the end of the book Mallory and Jared and Simon meet a guy his name is Phooka tries to trick people in to going the wrong way. Mallory asked him what way to Author Spider wick then he told him to go left and then right so they left and then they see the woods and they saw a girl and Jared said can I see author spider wick please and she said I will give you 10 minutes and he said okay then he said hey grandpa and he said who is you grandpa and he you are.
People should read this book because it has so much really great stuff in it and so many awesome actions in it.
The lesson in the book is that they try to keep the book so no one will get the book and turn the world into stone.
My question is that how can the stuff on the ground outside keep you safe.
I challenge you to read this book because this is a good book and it has some awesome parts and some cool parts in the book.
The book itself was good. It took me about an hour or so to pre-read it for my daughter. In this book we find out a lot more about the aunt in the home, and her father Great uncle Spiderwick who disappeared...