Pictures in the Dark

Overview

A chance photograph taken for the school Camera Club draws Charlie into the emotionally troubled lives of his classmate Jennifer's family, especially that of her younger brother who harbors an astounding secret.

A chance photograph taken for the school Camera Club draws Charlie into the emotionally troubled lives of his classmate Jennifer's family, especially that of her younger brother who harbors an astounding secret.

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1998 Mass-market paperback New. Remainder Mass market (rack) paperback. Glued binding. 208 p. Audience: Children/juvenile.

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Overview

A chance photograph taken for the school Camera Club draws Charlie into the emotionally troubled lives of his classmate Jennifer's family, especially that of her younger brother who harbors an astounding secret.

A chance photograph taken for the school Camera Club draws Charlie into the emotionally troubled lives of his classmate Jennifer's family, especially that of her younger brother who harbors an astounding secret.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
An amateur photographer discovers that a schoolmate with an abusive father can turn himself into an otter. "With its intricate construction and its poignantly recognizable characters, this thought-provoking story will linger long in the reader's mind," said PW in a starred review. Ages 10-14. (July)
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
From the author of Wolf and Chartbreaker comes a spellbinding novel of emotional suspense, spiked with a highly British sort of magical realism. A chain of coincidences leads happy-go-lucky aspiring photographer Charlie Willcox into an edgy friendship with fellow students Jennifer Luttrell and her peculiar younger brother Peter, whose eccentricities have earned him the enmity of his schoolmates. Charlie soon realizes that the Luttrell children are each in their own way victims of their father's near-maniacal obsession with control. While Jennifer seeks to stave off their father's rages by solving problems before they occur, Peter--awkward and accident-prone--has developed an eerier defense: he transforms himself into a creature that embodies all the qualities his family fears. When matters at home and at school come to an ugly pass for Peter, Charlie is forced to step in. Adding still more depth to an already persuasive tale, Charlie's insight into the Luttrell family expands in tandem with his perception of himself as an artist and an individual. With its intricate construction and its poignantly recognizable characters, this thought-provoking story will linger long in the reader's mind. Ages 12-up. (Oct.)
Children's Literature - Rebecca Joseph
This gripping suspense novel describes the emotional awakening of Charlie Wilcox who is an avid member of his school's photography club. One night Charlie photographs a mysterious presence in the local river. The presence may be an otter but there are no more wild otters in his part of England. As Charlie's exploration of the river expands, so does his relationship with his quiet classmate, Jenny, and her unusual younger brother, Peter, who is tormented by Charlie's schoolmates because they believe he causes evil things to happen with his "evil eye." The closer Charlie comes to discovering whether there really is an otter in the river, the closer that he comes to discovering a horrible secret in Jenny and Peter's family. This novel is part mystery, part supernatural, and totally fascinating.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780140389586
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 7/1/1998
  • Edition description: REPRINT
  • Pages: 208
  • Age range: 10 - 14 Years
  • Lexile: 640L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 4.40 (w) x 7.18 (h) x 0.39 (d)

Table of Contents

It begins with a photograph Charlie takes for school. His shot of a swimming otter is striking—and baffling, because there have been none in the area for years. As Charlie tries to find out where the animal came from, he keeps crossing paths with the unnerving Peter Luttrell. Why is Peter so fascinated with an ordinary photograph? Why do Peter's classmates call him 'Evil Eye'? And why do the mysterious otter's tracks lead directly to Peter's yard? "A spellbinding novel of emotional suspense." -- Publishers Weekly, starred review "A fantasy so real and so dangerous it creeps up on us without our realizing it and then pounces for the kill." -- William Sleator, author of Interstellar Pig Gillian Cross is the author of the Carnegie Medal-winning Wolf and, most recently, New World. She lives in England.
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