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The Adventures of Tintin: The Seven Crystal Balls Paperback – 30 Sep 1975

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Product details

  • Paperback: 62 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (30 Sept. 1975)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316358401
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316358408
  • Product Dimensions: 22.2 x 0.6 x 29.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,140,083 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

The Adventures of Tintin: The Castafiore Emerald The classic graphic novel. When Tintin and Captain Haddock happen across a community of gypsies they invite them home . . . just as Bianca Castafiore, the famous opera singer, decides to visit Tintin. It's chaos at Marlinspike Hall, and then a precious emerald goes missing!

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Biff TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 28 Jan. 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Classic Tintin adventure with lovely traditional drawing and bright colours.

If you are a fan this is a must have.

Gentle and rather old fashioned it takes you back to a different time and place.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 31 reviews
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
The eeriest adventure 21 Aug. 2000
By Elizabeth - Published on
Format: Paperback
My Tintin obsession began at a very early age, I am most happy to say. The Seven Crystal Balls is the one Tintin book I didn't read before bedtime, for the simple reason that it was too scary! Herge was masterful at creating any scenario and eliciting any reaction from his readers that he wished. In this book he created a spine-tingling supernatural thriller, concluded in the second part of this adventure, Prisoners of the Sun.
Seven Crystal Balls has it's share of laughs as well, provided in particular by Captain Haddock. At the start of the adventure, Haddock desperately trys to relinquish his gruff old sea-dog ways by sporting a monocle and speaking in a very diginified manner. As you can imagine, the results are slightly less than successful.
This adventure seems to focus around darkly lit and heavily furnished rooms, places of scholars and thought that can not combat the evil terrorizing Tintin's world. Prisoners of the Sun takes Tintin to the beautiful countryside of Peru. The contrast is remarkable, the result is beautiful. This two-part adventure is fantastic.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Sacrilege! The handwritten dialogue has been replaced with a digital typeset! 14 Dec. 2011
By Red Riding Hood - Published on
Format: Paperback
The dialogue in the story, handwritten in the original English versions, has all been replaced with a digital font. This completely changes the character of the story. Basically, 62 pages of calligraphy have been replaced with a typeset font. The font size is irregular, which is distracting, and there is a lot of empty white space in the dialogue bubbles.

I would recommend purchasing the little 3-story hardbacks (about 6.5" x 9.5"), which seem to still have the original writing, or if you like the original large format (about 8.5" x 11.5"), look for an old edition from a used book store.

I uploaded a customer image of the digital font to the Amazon "Look Inside" feature for Tintin Land of Black Gold.

Note that the Amazon "Look Inside" images are not from the current edition. You can tell by looking at the back cover. The old ones are "Printed in Belgium" and use the original title for "FLIGHT 714", which has been changed to "FLIGHT 714 TO SYDNEY" in the current editions. Also, the names of the translators are included on the copyright page in the old editions.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Mysterious Tintin thriller. 15 Dec. 1998
By Örn Leifsson - Published on
Format: Paperback
Herges Tintin comics are classics and probably the best of the genre. They really are for all ages,some of my best childhood memories are of reading Tintin or Tinni as he is known in Iceland and I still enjoy reading these books today. What makes the Tintin books so good is they seem to have everything in it that make up a good comicbook,originality, interesting characters,adventure,suspense,great humor and well thought out storys. If I had to chose only one Tintin book to take to a desert island I think the seven crystal balls would be it. The book is masterfully drawn like of course all the Tintin books and the story is not just an adventures thriller but it has a mysterious atmosphere to it which i really like.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
The one with the mummy 6 July 2010
By Keris Nine - Published on
Format: Paperback
There's the temptation to regard the first parts of all the Tintin two-part adventures as lesser scene-setting setting works for the main course - Destination Moon surpassed by the exploits of Explorers on the Moon, The Secret of the Unicorn establishing the adventure in Red Rackham's Treasure, and here with The Seven Crystal Balls clearly being "eclipsed" by the Inca adventures of Prisoners of the Sun. In many ways however there is just as much if not more interest in the earlier parts of these stories, which tend to have a rather more serious tone than is usual in Tintin books whereas their second-halves fall back on the usual exotic adventuring.

This is particularly the case with The Seven Crystal Balls. On the surface, it would seem to be little more than a mature version of the Egyptological themes of one of Hergé's earliest (and consequently most underrated) solo adventures, the hugely entertaining Cigars of the Pharaoh. Once again, the curse of Tutankhamun is evoked in the story of seven scientists who fall into mysterious comas soon after their return from Peru, where they have discovered and unearthed tomb of the legendary Inca King Rascar Capac, removing the mummy from its ancient resting place to take across the ocean for investigation and display in Europe.

The Seven Crystal Balls would seem to be better balanced than the earlier Tintin work in its treatment of the subject of mystic ancient curses, but that doesn't mean that it's necessarily more soberly realistic or any less entertaining as an adventure. If anything, the mystical elements are taken to even greater lengths in The Seven Crystal Balls (the title says it all - the mystic number seven, the telling of dark fortunes), with a tone of dread that is even darker. With greater length to elaborate the story, Hergé masterfully sets up dark premonitions right from the start, as Tintin reads an article about the archaeological discovery in a newspaper on his way to visit the newly aristocratic Captain Haddock in Marlinspike, but it's with a fantastically staged theatre act of audience participation in a mystic seer that raises the tensions considerably as the news of the first victim is dramatically announced.

Not so clearly the victims of a poisonous dart seen in Cigars of the Pharaoh, there are however traces of shattered crystal found at the side of each of the seven victims, which suggests that an earthly hand is involved, but Hergé keeps this wonderfully ambiguous with lightning bolts and dream-like states that bring visions of Rascar Capac coming to life and exacting terrible vengeance. It evokes a potent and palpable atmosphere that carries out throughout the book, the usual slapstick much toned-down here, relating only to an incident between Snowy, a cat and Nestor with a tray of drinks. Even there however, if so inclined, you could associate Snowy's pragmatic headlong attack and ignominious defeat at the claws of rather more mystical feline forces of Haddock's pet cat as a further commentary on what is to come.

Regardless, the tone established by Hergé is consistent and masterful throughout The Seven Crystal Balls, and although that tone changes considerably with the journey to South America in Prisoners of the Sun, the two halves are perfectly complementary, creating a whole that is unquestionably one of Hergé's greatest and most accomplished achievements.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Tintin and the Seven Crystal Balls 9 April 2000
By William A Murray - Published on
Format: Hardcover
As a prequel to 'Prisoners of the Sun', this adventure has it all. Bianca Castiafore, General Alcazar and the long suffering Nestor play second fiddle to Haddock and Tintin as they attempt to rescue Professor Calculus from kidnappers. Meanwhile an expedition team fall foul of the curse of Rascar Capac, an Inca mummy! This book is excellent; car chases, gun fights, suspense and Captain Haddock to ensure that everything goes far from smoothly! Buy 'Prisoners of the Sun' at the same time, you will not want to wait around to discover where Calculus has gone!
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