The Vengeance of the Witch Finder

The Vengeance of the Witch Finder by John Bellairs and Brad Strickland

While Rosa Rita and Mrs. Zimmermann were going back in time, Lewis and Uncle Jonathan took a trip through Europe. However, while visiting their cousin, Pelly, Lewis and the housekeeper’s son, Bertie, accidentally release an evil spirit that had been hidden in the garden’s maze. At first, nothing seems to be strange or off, but then Bertie gets word to Lewis that something strange is going on at Barnavelt Manner. When Lewis and Uncle Jonathan return Lewis realizes that something is off, and soon he and Bertie are trying to figure out what happened and how to save the day. The amulet that saves the day is actually a very powerful one, and gives the reader hope that Lewis might have some magic ability that will show itself in future books.

Character List/Book Summary:

Lewis Barnavelt – fat, bookworm, loves Sherlock Holmes and solving the mysteries. Accidentally, set an evil spirit free when exploring a secret location in the manor’s maze. Has nightmares after leaving England. Realizes all the walking tours are helping him, and Uncle Jonathan, loose weight. Uses his brain and thinks of a way to save everyone once the evil spirit posses or kidnaps everyone in the manor.

Rosa Rita Pottinger – broke her ankle before the trip and cannot go to Europe, is afraid of tunnels

Uncle Jonathan – realizes Lewis is having nightmares, but does not push him for answers. Tells Lewis that because he never married he does not know how to talk to kids, and that he loves Lewis. Goes through odd shops trying to find something to bring back to Mrs. Zimmermann.

Mrs. Zimmerman – stayed home to keep Rosa Rita company, explains the importance of the amulet that Lewis used to banish the evil spirit, Jonathan lets her keep it.

“Bertie” Bertram – Mrs. Goodring’s son, fatter than Lewis, was blinded from a blast near his home in the war, wants to go to New York City for an operation that could restore his sight. Plays Watson to Lewis’s Sherlock around Baravelt Manor. 

Police Constable Henry Dwiggins – helps Lewis and Jonathan find what would be 221B Baker Street. Holmes fanatic like Lewis and they swap addresses to write each other about Sherlock Holmes. Tells Lewis, who is dressed as Holmes, that Holmes can always call on the Police to help him on a case (this comes in handy later).

Arthur Pelham “Pelly” Barnavelt – Jonathan’s cousin, got to know Charlie (Lewis’s father) during the war. Is suffering some financial hardship. 

Mrs. Goodring – Pelly’s housekeeper, after Pelly found out what happened to Bertie he offered her a job and housing for her and Bertie. Her family had previously worked on the land.

Jenkins – Pelly’s butler, old and does not like Mr. Prestor. Tells Lewis and Bertie to leave the guest alone because he is up to no good and made him go and search for extra keys that had not been used in 50 years. 

Martin Barnavelt – dead for ages, accused of being a witch by the Roudheads (Puritans), a wizard who realized that Malachiah Pruitt was a wizard who was using an evil spirit to give proof that those he accused were witches. Somehow when he regained control of the manor put a protective spell so that the evil could not come across the circular drive. Captured the evil spirit that Malachiah was using and managed to contain the evil spirit by the use of a family amulet.

James – Martin’s son who wrote a book about Martin’s witch trial.

Malachiah Pruitt – witch finder when Martin was alive. Accused Martin of being a witch so he could gain control of Barnavelt manor. 

Mr. Prester – renting the gate keeper’s cottage when Lewis and Jonathan return to the manner, claims he is a business man from London who is in need of rest to recover from the stress of London. 


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