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The Mysteries of Harris Burdick [Paperback]

Chris Van Allsburg
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
RRP: 6.99
Price: 5.24 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

3 Mar 2011

"His disappearance is not the only mystery left behind. What were the stories that went with these drawings? There are some clues..."

Who is Harris Burdick? Where did he disappear to? And how was he going to finish his stories?

Chris Van Allsburg presents a series of loosely related drawings each accompanied by a title and a caption which the reader may use to make up his or her own story.

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The Mysteries of Harris Burdick + The Chronicles of Harris Burdick + Tuesday
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Product details

  • Paperback: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Andersen (3 Mar 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 184939279X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849392792
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 22 x 26 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,595 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Chris van Allsburg lives in Providence, Rhode Island and lectures at the Rhode Island School of Design. He is a sculptor and artist, and twice winner of the Caldecott Medal, first for Jumanji, and then for The Polar Express.

(c) Constance Brown Photography

Product Description


"A must-have, with a curious set of images to stimulate the imagination of young and old... Every school will want this extraordinary book." (The Bookseller)

"Allsburg's soft back and white illustrations have a dream-like quality manipulating light, perspective and texture to create unsettling drawings. The stories mix interiors and exteriors, portraits and landscapes, all full of wonder and mysteries to be solved." (Booktrust)

"Every page tantalises, sparks ideas, plays with your mind, intrigues and inspires." (The Bookbag)

"Extremely puzzling as well as stimulating . . . Certainly an invitation for individual interpretations and expansions in almost any media." (The School Librarian)

"An innovative and useful book, especially for using as stimulus for young people's writing." (Armadillo Magazine)

Book Description

A stunningly unique picture book for all ages, which encourages creative writing and the imagination from the two time Caldecott medal winner, Chris Van Allsburg.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a wonderful tool for the imagination! 19 Jun 1998
By A Customer
I noticed this book is recommended for ages 4-8. My 10-year old son, who normally reads adult sci-fi fantasy by the likes of Piers Anthony and David Eddings, found this book in his school library last year and fell in love with it! It's so much more than just a book. The pictures are so rich and full of detail, your child (and maybe even you!) will sit for hours making up stories to match the mysteries. If you're looking for an educational gift that's not too "nerdy", this is the book to buy.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
The illustrations are so captivating and evocative that even the most die-hard non-creative has to start using the right brain. I've used this book as a tool to jump-start creative brainstorming sessions as well as a tool to teach creative writing to adults.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Remembered fondly from childhood 7 Jan 1999
By A Customer
I am 21 years old and could not be more excited to find this book again! My uncle read to me and my cousins all the time when we were children. This book along with The Polar Express, The Wreck of the Zephyr, and Jumanji became one of our favorites! I had no idea until now that they were all the same author. The Mysteries of Harris Burdick was especially fascinating. Because only pictures with captions are provided we gazed at this book for hours, imagining all the possibilities. I strongly urge parents to buy this book and others by Van Allsburg. I feel that they all encourage reading, and this book in particular encourages the imagination. Though I haven't seen or read his books in years, I still remember them as if I read them yesterday.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Resource For Teachers! 14 Dec 2007
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Came across this book a while ago and have been after a copy for a while. This particular item is the portfolio edition, in other words roughly A3 sized pictures on cardboard with a mysterious caption for each one underneath.

The drawings are superb and each caption makes you ask all sorts of questions, sparking off a million thoughts in your imagination as to what the story could be. A truly fantastic resource for teachers as a writing stimulus for children in KS2, and the good thing about these is that you can trim half a centimetre of each side and laminate them in A3 pouches to keep them looking really excellent. I've used them several times already and the children love them and find them really helpful in giving them ideas of what to write about.

This is so excellent I'm even contemplating buying a second set and getting each one framed!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
I bought this book a few years ago, when I was 22. It is a fantastic vehicle for imagination. I was drawn in immediately by the eerie drawings and mysterious captions. Brilliant. Edward Gorey fans take notice.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Book has stuck in student's mind for ten years 8 Dec 1998
By A Customer
When I was in the 6th grade, the best teacher I ever had used this book as a creative writing tool. The stories that this book inspired me and my classmates to write, greatly helped in are collective developement as writers. It has been so vivdly etched in my memory, that I recently went to the library to search for this book. I felt ridiculous searching through the children's section for this book, but when I finally found it, my face lit-up with the memories it awoke.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars great inspiration. 26 Nov 2000
By A Customer
the pictures in this book have given me the inspiration for sixteen different short stories that i have written. the introduction tells of the strange way in which the author came to be in possesion of the brilliant drawings and they simply make your imagination wander.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
My seventh grade language arts teacher has used this book as an important tool in our writing skills and encourages us to write about a paragraph for each caption one a day. I think this book is extremely interesting and you could spend hours just thinking of stories to write about or tell to others. I think this book would be great for little kids;it would keep them busy for a long time. It's good for adults, too.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars NICE
It is a very subtle book and illustrated with tons of wisdom and sensibility. A good choice for a present.
Published 4 months ago by mauro
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant challenge
These intriguing pictures are accompanied by a title and a line from a story ..... that has never been found. It's up to the reader to fill in the blanks. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Judith Dubois
5.0 out of 5 stars Quite beautiful
The black and white of the illustrations just add to their imaginative world.
Quite beautiful.
All the better for no specific language - great for a child's spontaneous... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Finn
4.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic for inspiring talk and writing
14 different stories that you can use as a springboard for your own stories, or use them all together to write one fully illustrated one. Read more
Published 11 months ago by meryl sangare
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous inspiring book
Intriguing collection of great pictures that will inspire both young and old. This has inspired my Year 4 class and their writing
Published 15 months ago by Miss Jacqueline A Sinclair
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely brilliant book with a lovely backstory. Even if it is made...
Absolutely everybody should have a copy of this book. It has that rare quality of appealing to all ages and the artwork is just marvelous.
Published 15 months ago by S K Willy
5.0 out of 5 stars Weirdly wonderful for teachers.
Excellent literacy lesson prompts for KS2, and I would guess well into secondary age range. Intriguing visual ideas, strange captions to prompt responses. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Julian L
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Story Starter
The pictures in this book can be used with or without the titles to inspire creative writing in Key Stage 2. Read more
Published on 7 May 2012 by Primary Teacher
5.0 out of 5 stars I cannot praise this book highly enough!
This is an intriguing picture book for an older child or adult. I have the portfolio edition and every picture would be worth framing but where it really comes into its own is as... Read more
Published on 19 Feb 2012 by Ms. N. D. Merriman
3.0 out of 5 stars paperback print
I really like this book. I think the idea and concept is by far inspirational. I am a bit disappointed at the finish of the actual book. Read more
Published on 2 Feb 2012 by Mr. S. A. Brown
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