Cover image for John Bellairs's Lewis Barnavelt in The beast under the wizard's bridge
John Bellairs's Lewis Barnavelt in The beast under the wizard's bridge
Strickland, Brad.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Dial Books for Young Readers, [2000]

Physical Description:
151 pages ; 22 cm
Lewis Barnavelt tries to avert disaster when the destruction of an old bridge threatens to release a diabolical force, the legacy of a long-dead evil magician.
Reading Level:
730 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR MG 5.4 6.0 51860.

Reading Counts RC 6-8 5.5 10 Quiz: 24955 Guided reading level: NR.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf
X Juvenile Fiction Mystery/Suspense

On Order



What is it about the old Wilder Creek Bridge? Even after it's torn down--especially after it's torn down--why does it continue to exude a sense of deadly menace that arouses both Lewis Barnavelt's curiosity...and his deepest fears? Unable to resist the lure of its mysteries, Lewis and his best friend, Rose Rita Pottinger, discover both shocking secrets and a monster so terrible that even the combined efforts of Lewis, Rose Rita, Uncle Jonathan, and Mrs. Zimmermann may not be enough to save themselves--and all humankind--from its ferocious grasp.Brad Strickland continues the best-selling series of the late John Bellairs in this hair-raising mystery-adventure sure to bring shivers to Lewis Barnavelt's many fans.

Author Notes

Brad Strickland was born in New Hollard, Georgia in 1947. He received a Ph.D. in American literature from the University of Georgia. He has been a Professor of English at Gainesville State College since 1987. His first novel, To Stand Beneath the Sun, was published in 1986. Since then he has written or co-written over 60 novels. His books include The Ghost in the Mirror, The Vengeance of the Witch-Finder, The Doom of the Haunted Opera, The Hand of the Necromancer, The Tower at the End of the World, The House Where Nobody Lived, and The Sign of the Sinister Sorcerer. In 2001, he received the Georgia Author of the Year Award in the Children's/Young Adult Division for When Mack Came Back. He has also co-written books in several series including Wishbone, Star Trek, and Are You Afraid of the Dark?

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Gr. 3^-6. Why is Uncle Jonathan so upset about the old iron bridge being torn down and why is he attempting to keep his suspicions a secret from his nephew, Lewis? As Sherlock Holmes would say, "The game's afoot!" Strickland combines the conventions of mystery writing (an old will, a secret passage) with those of science fiction (a piece of a meteorite that glows with swirling colors), folklore (a soul hiding outside the body), fantasy (a magic spell), and horror (a hideous monster rising from the creek). Faithful readers, who have followed Lewis, Rose Rita, Uncle Jonathan, and Mrs. Zimmerman since their debut in John Bellairs' The House with a Clock in Its Walls (1973), will find this mystery entirely up to standard with its familiar characters, twisting plot, and happy ending. Another fast-paced story in a long-running series. --Carolyn Phelan

School Library Journal Review

Gr 5-8-Something about Wilder Creek Bridge troubles Lewis Barnavelt, and he enlists the help of his friend Rose Rita Pottinger in his quest to find the source of this menacing feeling. Lewis's guardian, Uncle Jonathan (a sorcerer), and their neighbor Mrs. Zimmermann ("an honest-to-goodness witch") also know that the bridge is evil. In overhearing a conversation between them, Lewis mistakenly concludes that Jonathan does not trust him or Rose Rita, bringing back his old fears of being sent away from the family and friends he has come to love. In fact, Uncle Jonathan distrusts Mephistopheles and Ermine Moote, who are attempting to help bring back The Great Old Ones. If they succeed, the earth will be their dominion and humans will cease to exist. In the end, Lewis and Rose Rita (with a little help from Uncle Jonathan and Mrs. Zimmermann) are able to stop the Mootes and save the world. Lewis learns that his fears of losing his home are unfounded, and his relationship with his uncle is strengthened. A wonderful blend of mystery, adventure, ghosts, and friendship.-Lana Miles, Duchesne Academy, Houston, TX (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.