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The Eyeball Collector (Tales From The Sinister City #3)

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  710 Ratings  ·  80 Reviews
Although Hector Fitzbaudly has always lived a plush life on the posh side of the River Foedus, he's yearned to slip away from his comfortable home and see the seedy side of Urbs Umida. Unfortunately, he gets his chance when a blackmail artist confronts his father with a terrible secret from his past, and Hector finds himself penniless and on the streets. He is determined t ...more
ebook, 272 pages
Published September 1st 2009 by Feiwel & Friends (first published June 5th 2009)
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Sep 20, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Edward Gorey once said, "I suppose I know a few tots who would like my books." In his day the man perfected the art of the macabre, helping to raise whole generations of children with a taste for the darkly humorous. Kids who continue to indulge such tastes have a strange array of books to choose from these days. They could read some Lemony Snicket, find old Charles Addams cartoons, or perhaps dip a toe in the waters of F.E. Higgins. I first read an F.E. Higgins book roundabout two years ago whe ...more
Nov 11, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ssr
a minor charachter in this book was trupein he was the infamous eyeball collector.He went town to town scamming people but he wanted to go into "retirement" so he needed to pull of the mother on all shams and his victams were the fitzbaldy's, hector the son of mr. fitzbaldy wanted to revenge his fathers name and his life so he fallowed trupein now know as the baron to town and his knowlegde of butterflies intrested him becuase his host was throughing a midwinter fest and she needed butterflies s ...more
J.L. Hilton
May 31, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Kept me guessing. Very original. Have to love a book that uses words like coruscating, diurnal and crepuscular. I wouldn't call it steampunk, but definitely neo-Victorian alternate reality, kind of a gothic Dickens meets Poe. Intriguing, creative way to tell a tale, with combinations of omniscient narrative (switching back and forth between various POVs), letters, fliers, advertisements, and crossovers from other books in the series (apparently all stories happen concurrently and overlap in part ...more
Sep 06, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy-series
Higgins is a really good author. I immensely enjoyed The Black Book and wish I'd read the middle one, The Bone Magician, which I somehow missed.

Hector Fitzbaudly, a child of wealth and learning, is suddenly paupered and orphaned because of the actions of a conartist who blackmails his family. Hector wanders into Urbs Umida (the seedy side of town we were introduced to in The Black Book) blindly, focused only upon revenge. When he gets his chance, will he take it?

I love that Higgins pulls in li
Flora Smith
Dec 01, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the third story in the Tales From the Sinister City Series. Its a bit gothic, creepy, and a bit on the dark side and wonderful fun for all.

Hector lives on the wealthy side of Urbs Umida and enjoys crossing over to the wrong side of the river for adventure until he finds himself an orphan with no other place to go. Filled with revenge against the sinister Truepin, he soon finds himself embroiled in a mystery.

Mysteries woven into other mysteries, this story contains threads of the previous
Aug 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely love FE Higgins' work and this one did not disappoint! Creepy, mysterious, and very odd --if this is your thing, you will like this book!
Watson Wildcats
Oct 25, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 25, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A dark, disturbing book that seemed rather pointless. Lady Mandible is a monster and none of her disturbing behavior added anything to the story especially the vile scene of the French cat eater. I found that to be particularly disgusting and total unnecessary as well as the live butterfly cape. I’m not sure I am going to continue with the series because nothing is ever resolved in any of the books and I am losing patience with it all.

I did love the riddles though!

Sexual Content: none
Language: n
Cecilia Rodriguez
There is a strong influence of Edgar Allen Poe in Higgins' plot.
Part of the story is told through letters written by Hector Fitzbauldy to his
friend, Polly.
As the story reaches its conclusion, a character from the previous novels
makes a surprise appearance.
Sab Cornelius
Nov 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition <--- I do book blogging on the side, so posted my full review here. [Site is currently uggo/a WIP]
Jun 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hah, the solution to the landlord's riddle doesn't make any sense, there's still a 10th man.
Jan 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is interesting, if you like horrible, I hope you will like this book,

I give this book 4 ⭐
May 11, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hector schwört Rache. Sein Vater ist von dem hinterlistigen Betrüger Gulliver Truepin in den Ruin getrieben worden und vor Gram gestorben. Und das wird Truepin büßen müssen. Unter einem Vorwand schleicht Hector sich auf dem schaurigen Schloss der eiskalten Lady Mandible ein, wo Truepin – inzwischen in der Maske des vornehmen Baron Bovrik – ein luxuriöses Leben führt. Die Lady bereitet gerade das jährliche Mittwinterfest vor, und Hector bekommt den Auftrag, für eine besonders spe
Feb 13, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition


Puzzling riddles


...and Butterflies?

The Eyeball Collector has got it all. A villain as dastardly as Count Olaf, with an eyepatch and multiple disguises. An orphan straight out of a Dickens novel with thieving compatriots reminiscent of the Artful Dodger and company. A cold and imperious noble, Lady Mandible, who has mysterious plans of her own. A spine-shivery, gothic atmosphere tinged with menace.

At first I saw nothing. The moon was behind the swollen clouds and the sheeting
Oct 15, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the third book in Higgins Tales from the Sinister City series. All of these tales are separate stories, but the characters do have some cross over from book to book. I didn't enjoy this book quite as much as the first two books, but it was still a wonderful story. Unlike previous stories this story didn't really have any element of magic to it; it was a creepy and fun historical mystery with a heavy Victorian overtone to it.

Hector is the son on a wealthy wine merchant. He has led a life
Rickey Russell
The Eyeball Collector was a discount read. I found it in one of my local retail chains very cheap so I bought it. Mostly because of the title and the cool design of the book cover. I had never heard of this series and after reading it discovered it was part of a preteen novel series aimed at getting young boys to read. Here is something I have learned over the years, A good story is a good story. Don’t let marketing get in the way of reading something with pre-conceived notions that it is not re ...more
Jul 04, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is another book that I have had on my shelves for years but never got round to reading so when I needed something to listen to next in my car and I saw this on the shelf at the library I thought I might as well listen to it instead.

The narrator wasn't bad, he wasn't as gripping as some of the others I've heard and he did a really silly accent for one of the characters which threw me off everytime he spoke but other than that he does quite a good job.

This story follows Hector as he journeys
May 26, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya
This is not a bad book; it is quite well written with a very intricate plot. However, it is a very dark book that left me quite a bit upset overall.

Young Hector Fitzbaudly has found himself thrust into a life of poverty as a result of a horrible scammer and blackmailer by the name of Gulliver Truepin. Truepin's misdeeds lead Hector's father to kill himself, placing Hector all alone on the bad side of town without a penny to his name. Hector vows to get his revenge and quickly finds an opportunit
Jun 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
F.E. Higgins' The Eyeball Collector, book three of the Tales of the Sinister City series, once again takes us by the hand and drags us onto the wicked streets of Urbs Umida, where we join young Hector Fitzbaudly as he embarks on an adventure he could never have imagined. The son of a well-to-do north-side winemaker and lepidopterist, Hector couldn't ask for a better life, which is never a good thing in a city full of thieves and swindlers. Enter one Gulliver Truepin, con artist extraordinaire, a ...more
A middle-grade book with boys in mind and part of a series of 'Tales From the Sinister City' (Urbs Umida) a kind of steamy Victorianesque place of gaslamps, cobblestones, pickpockets. The book is populated by characters with names like Lord Mandible, Oscar Carpue and Lottie Fitch. Our hero, the gently brought up and well-educated Hector Fizbaudly, loses everything when his rich businessman father dies after having been blackmailed by the dastardly one-eyed Gulliver Truepin. Swearing revenge, Hec ...more
May 04, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 11, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
Glasaugen. Sind. Nicht. Rund!

(Ansonsten zwischendurch eher langweilig, zum Ende hin wird es aber doch wieder spannend.)
Audra Deemer
Hector Fitzbaudly gets his wish to experience the seedier side of Urbs Umida when his father is blackmailed with a secret form his past. Finding himself penniless and homeless, Hector realizes this is not the life he wants and he decides to seek revenge. Unfortunately, the Eyeball Collector is a master of disguise! This book is called a “polyquel” by the author, as it contains elements from both The Black Book of Secrets and The Bone Magician as well as its own mysteries. This book may not inter ...more
Scarlett Sims
I didn't realize when I picked up this book that it was part of a series. In fact, I didn't realize it until I got to the author's note at the end. It reads well as a standalone but I still want to read the other books. I love the setting... sort of a Victorian fantasy world. Nothing strictly speaking supernatural happens, but in the same style as A Series of Unfortunate Events rather improbably things happen and I believe the book is not set in "our world." It was quite dark and disturbing at t ...more
Sep 08, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great sequel to The Black Book of Secrets in the uniquely dark world of F.E. Higgins where everyone has a dark secret past. The story again pits the good-hearted heroes against wholly decadent and twisted villains who seek to feed their dark lusts at the expense of the innocent and again the struggle is not only against their evil plots and devices alone, but also against becoming as corrupted as the villains in the process of foiling their evil plots and exacting revenge.

I am greatly enjoying t
This book seems perfect for Middle School-age boys: moments of humor, that deliciously gross factor that age group loves, a world they can believe. And riddles.

The plot is pretty simple: boy's father dies after losing his fortune, boy plots revenge, boy almost realizes revenge. The titular man is a blackmailer (among other things) and the to-be-revenged-upon character, with just enough "ewww" in him. Lady Mandible is creepy, and the name! Really: mandible? Love. It.

Not quite a sequel, it's a new
Aug 31, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition


Puzzling riddles


...and Butterflies?


Hector is a plucky and likeable hero, with a special gift of riddling and another of cultivating butterflies. The antagonist, the ever-devious Baron Bovrik de Vandolin, is a wonderfully developed character who justifies his trespasses against Hector with flashbacks of his childhood.
The writing style F.E. Higgins uses is simply put: entrancing. Higgins keeps you on your toes through every truly unexpected twist and turn of the book.
Chris Lynch
The first I'd heard of F.E.Higgins was when she gave a speech at my daughter's school Speech Day last July, and handed a prize to my little treasure. She of course plugged her three books - The Black Book Of Secrets, The Bone Magician, and this one.

Then, an eerie coincidence. My Dad gives me a copy of 'The Eyeball Collector' a few days later as a birthday present. Spooky!

It's a great little gothic yarn. It will be a few years before my young'un will have the stomach to read this! More macabre th
This was not my favorite of the three paraquels (that still goes to The Black Book of Secrets), but I really enjoy F.E. Higgins' stories and style. There were some tragically funny and ironic bits (particularly involving the feast at the end) that really appealed to the darker side of my humor. The characters are quite unique - often funny and bizarre (like Lord Mandible and Mrs. Fitch) or sometimes strangely creepy. I felt that some of the darker sides of Lady Mandible's character however, nev ...more
Aug 31, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-fiction
The final book of the trilogy by F.E. Higgins. All these books are very fresh in their ideas. This one in particular is full of intrigue, scandal, plotting, death and murder!

Written in the perspective of a young boy whose father was blackmailed and ultimately died, leaving young Hector alone and penniless. His drive to seek revenge on the blackmailer leads him to a strange manorhouse called Withypitts Hall, run by the eccentric Lady Mandible who has an odd taste for the macabre.

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F.E. Higgins has been fascinated by the macabre ever since seeing a ghostly apparition as a child. Nowadays Higgins travels the lands that these books describe, collecting strange artifacts and the even stranger stories behind them. When not in pursuit of a story, Higgins may be found in a haunted house in Kent, where a dismembered hand cradles a large diamond on the mantelpiece.
More about F.E. Higgins

Other books in the series

Tales From The Sinister City (4 books)
  • The Black Book of Secrets (Tales From The Sinister City, #1)
  • The Bone Magician (Tales From The Sinister City, #2)
  • The Lunatic's Curse (Tales From The Sinister City, #4)

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“Ludlow put a hand on his arm. "A friend of mine used to say, 'You cannot change the past, but every moment is an opportunity to change your future.” 12 likes
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