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Shadows of the Dark Crystal (Jim Henson's The Dark Crystal, #1)
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Shadows of the Dark Crystal (Jim Henson's The Dark Crystal #1)

4.03  ·  Rating details ·  315 Ratings  ·  74 Reviews
The first series of original novels ever set in the world of Jim Henson's The Dark Crystal.  

Jim Henson's The Dark Crystal: Shadows of the Dark Crystal is set years before the events of the classic film and follows the journey of a young Gelfling woman who leaves her secluded home to uncover the truth surrounding the disappearance of her brother who has been accused of tre
Hardcover, 264 pages
Published June 28th 2016 by Grosset & Dunlap
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Barbara The book is set long before the events of the movie, so it might actually be better to read it before seeing the movie.

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I was in some serious need of a comfort read this week so I went to the bookstore and stumbled across this book. Literally. It was poking off the lower shelf all crooked and I tripped over it. And I’m so glad I did. The Dark Crystal was one of my favorite movies from childhood, and is one I still watch with pleasure quite often. To discover a novel set in the years before the film, a whole new prequel to the film, was a delightful find, and exactly what I needed at the moment. It is full of adve ...more
May 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: dark-crystal
I still, to this day, LOVE the Dark Crystal, and it's fascinating worlds and denizens! And I'm thrilled that there's a new resurgence in this property!

This title (and the Power of the Dark Crystal comic series) both really capture the majesty and grandeur of the world, coupled with compelling characters and stories.
Aug 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: dark-fantasy

The Dark Crystal was my favorite childhood movie, is still one of my favorite movies. I'm so glad there's been a resurgence in interest. Shadows is the first of JM Lee's prequels that welcomes you back to the world of Thra.

At this time there are thousands of Gelflings across Thra divided into seven clans of separate cultures, histories, beliefs, traditions, and magics. They are beautiful matriarchal societies in complete harmony with their lands.

We start off in the swamps of Sog where Gelflings
Jul 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing
this was amazing. it didn't need to be complex, it didn't need to tell us something new, it needed to tell the other half of the story... more to be said, I'm just speechless and stunned on how perfect this was!


Are you still in mourning after reading that mess that was Return to Labyrinth? Looking to read something that actually does justice to the original material? Something that Henson would be proud of.


Every page had me smiling.

No, I'm serious.

The Dark Crystal was a fa
Jan 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
Has a proper sense of the world, with loads of detail and nods to the movie, while still introducing creative new elements. Very curious to see how this series unfolds, particularly knowing that, as a prequel, it has to end on a rather dismal note.
May 19, 2016 rated it really liked it
I have eagerly been awaiting this book since Jim Hensen Productions announced the Author Quest contest about two years ago. "The Dark Crystal" was one of my favorite movies as a kid, still is. I love Jim Hensen's and Brian Froud's artistry. I will forever be grateful to Jim Hensen for introducing me to Brian Froud.

So when I won the ARC from Goodreads I was overjoyed, especially since the winner of the contest was local author J.M. Lee and a local bookstore, Red Balloon Books, would be having a b
Jun 30, 2016 rated it really liked it
A marvelous romp through a world familiar and yet new and interesting. A lovely echo of the movie, with new intriguing aspects and a charming story.
Mar 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, kid-lit
The Dark Crystal probably did more to shape my childhood imagination than any other movie, book or t.v. show, so I've had a lifelong interest in anything that expands on the world and mythology that Jim Henson created. I received this book as a Christmas present and was expecting it to be either glorified fan-fiction, or a very simple book for children. I was pleasantly surprised to find that J.M. Lee is the real deal as a fantasy author. He knows how to build a world and flesh out fantastic cha ...more
Searska GreyRaven
Mar 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Everything I could have hoped for from a prequel to the movie. Loved it. ^_^
Jul 29, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: adventure, fantasy
Most people familiar with 1980s pop culture have at least heard of The Dark Crystal. Yep, that weird-yet-cool fantasy movie featuring all those creepy puppets. The one that pre-dated The Labyrinth by a few years.

Author J.M. Lee must be a fan of the film, because he has crafted a fantastic prequel that is every bit as awesome as the original story. Here we have Shadows of The Dark Crystal, which takes place several years before the events of the film. This story centers on Naia, a strong-willed G
Regen Ton
Feb 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I admit to being a real sucker for this whole invented world and love
anything i can get my hands on about it, but this novel was really fun to read.
I am looking forward to continuing the story. The author did a great job of staying
true to the already existing world of Dark Crystal, but still expanding on it, giving
us more history and back story in small enough pieces to keep us reading.
Jan 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
As a lifelong fan of The Dark Crystal, I was pleasantly pleased and satisfied with this addition to the the world of Thra. J.M. Lee did an outstanding job in recapturing the essence (teehee) of the Dark Crystal universe, and it is my favorite thing from there since the movie.

One thing that made me happy with this book is the exploration and diversities of the gelfling villages and tribes. It was awesome seeing J.M Lee's expansions on the world I love. Add this to the fact that he pulled no punch
Jul 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
I'm of the generation for whom The Dark Crystal was a formative moment in development, a movie we watched again and again, and in that sense, it was so exciting to return to that world in this book and to learn more about gelfing culture. (view spoiler) ...more
Sarah Crawford
Jul 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
The novel takes place before the events of the movie. There are many familiar character types in the novel such as the Gelfling, the Skeksis, one urRu, podlings, etc. There are good descriptions of the living conditions, the swamp/bog and other places. There are also familiar creatures such as the nebling.

The basic theme is that Naia, a young female gelfling who is basically an understudy to her mother who is basically a wise woman/shamaness/healer for the clan, has a brother who has been accuse
Mark Schroy
Aug 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
I'm sure I'm biased since The Dark Crystal is still one of my favorite movies, but this was definitely an entertaining imagining into what happened before the movie's storyline. It was a great addition that all the Gelfling clans were not the same and clearly all evolved based on their surroundings. It was good, but I felt that once the other animals/creatures/characters from the movie started showing up, the story really took off for me. Fun read for any Dark Crystal fans.
Jul 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is a pre-quell to the Dark Crystal and book #1. This is the story of a young gelfling and her quest to clear her brothers name. Her adventure takes her far from home and the wonderful characters she meets, is one exciting read. Can't wait to read the next book in the series.
Lisa James
Aug 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This first installment of a brand new series for those of us who grew up on the movie, this is an amazing dive back into a world of sheer magic. I didn't want to put it down! This author kept our beloved world AUTHENTIC. I can't wait for the next one!
Adam Hall
May 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
4.5/5 . Great prequel to the dark crystal film. Loved how it expanded and added color to the world of Thra.
Eric Jackson
Jul 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, fantasy
A nice beginning tot he prequel series.
Susan Watts
Jun 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I gave this to my granddaughter to read. She enjoyed it, She wants there to be a second book.
Larissa Nash
Jul 23, 2016 marked it as to-read
Shelves: fantasy, young-adult
I picked up this book because A) I love "The Dark Crystal,” and B) the protagonist, Naia, shares her name with my beloved thirteen-year-old cat. (I'm a dork.)

I can't wait to read it!
Jul 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
2/18/18 Read for 2nd time, cause my sister got me the 2nd book which I am about to read for the first time.
8/28/16 I can't wait for the next book to come out!!!!! It was great!!
Christopher Schmitz
Jul 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
So I just finished Shadows of the Dark Crystal by J.M. Lee which I kind of picked up on a whim. As an author who found immense inspiration as a child seeing this film, I’m always drawn to anything about it (or anything from the 80s involving MotU, Thundercats, etc.) I was in a Twin Cities bookstore with my daughter (an aspiring teen author) and was telling her about the movie, which she hadn’t seen yet when another customer told me that Lee was also from MN and how he’d won a writing contest spo ...more
May 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
When my flatmate admitted that he had never seen the Jim Henson film The Dark Crystal, I instantly went to check my DVD collection. Finding it inexplicably missing, I then did the next logical thing: I pulled up my public library website and searched the catalog for the name of the film. I was surprised that two hits were returned: the DVD to borrow, and this book: Shadows of the Dark Crystal.

Even though it was listed as part of the juvenile collection, and I am very much an adult, I placed a ho
Kelso Kappel
Jul 04, 2017 rated it liked it
Oh if only the quality of the ending was given to the two thirds at the start of the book. Shadow of the Dark Crystal is a prequel to the 80's film and reveals the horrifying truth of what the Skesis are doing to the Gelfling people. There are moments that shine and recall the brilliant weirdness of the movie. But alas, the story up until the ending is this: lengthy description of the landscape, run into a creature, more countryside and forest descriptions, then run into a creature, etc. And whi ...more
Jun 20, 2017 rated it liked it
A good debut.. and a series I look forward to continuing.

To say this was a first novel by the Author JM Lee, and by no mean feat an easy challenge considering the cult following that Jim Henson's Original movie has acquired over the years, as faithful member of this cult following myself; I can say with certainty that fans will NOT be disappointed in this book.

Set as the prequel to the movie we follow out main character Naia on her adventure to discover why her brother has gone missing and why
April Helms
May 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
This serves as a prequel to the Dark Crystal movie. Not sure entirely where in the timeline, but I'm guessing it's not too far back before the action of the film. I really loved this book and can hardly wait to get the sequel. I just love the details put in, which fit really well with both the movie and what I wondered- for example, the various Gelfling tribes, their customs and their structure. It was also neat reading a book about how the Skeksis were once actually admired (I already knew this ...more
Tasha Robinson
Jul 10, 2017 rated it liked it
This book has Ye Olde Prequel Problem — it's all about characters discovering things that the readers almost certainly already know. (And if they don't, because they haven't seen The Dark Crystal, this actually isn't a very good place to start the story, because it takes so much about this world for granted, and explains so little of what readers need to know.) That said, I enjoyed reading it for the way it expands the background and culture of the Gelflings, and the Gelfling perspective on the ...more
Mar 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I took my granddaughter to see The Dark Crystal at a Fathom Event at our local theater. My own children had enjoyed the movie and I wanted her to see it on the big screen. It was an experience. I had forgotten most of the story and really only remembered the impact it had on me at the time and the "look" of the sets and puppets. At the end (or maybe at the beginning) of the presentation, Jim Henson's daughter did a little synopsis about the movie, her dad and some background on the whole process ...more
Nov 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
What a great book. Easy to read but still mature enough to not be simplistic. The characters were interesting and the story while not overly complex was certainly engaging. The plot is not too dissimilar to the original Dark Crystal storyline but different enough to allow it to stand on it's own. My only problem with it was that since the events bared more than a passing resemblance to the original, how did they allow the same events to happen years later? Maybe it gets explained in an upcoming ...more
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Born and raised in the great Minnesota north, Joe spent his formative years searching for talking animals and believing he could control the weather. After pursuing nerdy interests in comparative film studies, screenwriting, and Shakespeare, he graduated from the University of Minnesota with a much nerdier degree in linguistics with a focus in Japanese phonology.

In 2013, the Jim Henson Company and
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“Little stones, pebbles,” urVa said. “Big stones, boulders. Even bigger, Thra itself. Stones come in all shapes and sizes. All things are connected. What we surrender, we may be given. What we lose, we may find again. For every one there is another.” “Well,” 1 likes
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