My brother and I have been searching for a young adult book for some time that we read as children (in the late 90's). The book is solidly fantasy and involves significant instant spacial travel (like teleportation but magical and not in a sci-fi way).

The main scene that I recall is a girl (one of the main characters, teenage or younger) being chased up a stone tower by a sort of humanoid creature. She falls after reaching the top but I forget what causes this. I specifically remember that the tower is located in a large field of wheat and that she (and the assailant) "teleported" to the location before climbing the tower. The book also describes her not being harmed by the fall due to her unconsciousness when she hits the ground (like a drunk driver not being harmed by a crash because they stay relaxed).

Another scene that MAY be from the same book is they visit an island with a large city on it and a neighboring island has an antagonist character who has his mouth sown shut.

I recall tidbits else but am really not sure if they are from the same book. I do not know if the book is part of a series either.

  • You mention "teleportation but not in a sci-fi way" and I'm unsure what that means. Teleportation is, at present, just sci-fi. Is it religious or fantasy or something else in the book? Please elaborate. It might help someone identify the book. How does being unconscious prevent harm from falling off a tower? Any more details will help your chances of getting an answer. Oct 11, 2019 at 0:02
  • @MeatTrademark Teleportation can also be a psychic or magical ability, especially when performed without some apparatus. For example, Jumper by Steven Gould.
    – DavidW
    Oct 11, 2019 at 0:23
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    Welcome to Science Fiction & Fantasy! Please see our guide to help improve your question. Oct 11, 2019 at 0:54
  • @DavidW "Fantasy" (which I mentioned) covers psychic and magic, I think. But still, how does being unconscious prevent harm from falling off a tower? Oct 11, 2019 at 4:32
  • 1
    If you have any more descriptions to put into the question this will help a lot. What is the tower made of? Stone? Metal? Did she fall out a window or off the top? Were they chasing up the outside of the tower? Is there a city, or forest involved? Any descriptions about the characters (old? young? royalty? poor? blonde?). Anything you have helps.
    – Vogon Poet
    Oct 11, 2019 at 4:35

1 Answer 1


Your description appears to be the first Abarat book, published by Clive Barker in 2002. One of my all-time favorites; definitely fantasy but also absurdist, full of creatures that the author illustrated with oil paintings (included in some editions of the book).

Candy Quackenbush lives in Chickentown, Minnesota, maybe 7th or 8th grade, when one day in class she starts doodling these undulating lines that look like ocean waves. Eventually she wanders out of school, past the edge of town into "shoulder-high, gently-swaying grass" that obscures Chickentown from sight as she walks. In chapter 7, she is chased up into a tower in the middle of this grassy area, by a humanoid monster called Mendelson Shape. The tower turns out to be a dilapidated, abandoned lighthouse that she has to climb to the top of, to call the ocean (from another world) back to the lighthouse. As her pursuer climbs, the lighthouse falls apart.

Here's the end of the chapter:

Then she seemed to feel the world crack beneath her and his hand slid off her throat as the platform folded up beneath them. There was a great eruption of splintered wood and a shout of alarm from Shape... And suddenly she was falling through the broken platform, dropping to the ground in a rain of broken planks. Had she been conscious when she fell, she would have done herself very considerable damage. But luckily she passed out as she fell, and thus landed with every muscle in her body relaxed. And there she lay, lost to the world, sprawled in the grass at the foot of the lighthouse, while the waters of the Sea of Izabella came rolling in to meet their summoning light.

There are also creatures in this series with their mouths sewn shut, known as stitchlings.

  • Wow, looks like you created an account just to answer this. You're awesome, welcome to Stack Exchange.
    – johnDanger
    Jun 26, 2020 at 17:26
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    (1) Abarat is excellent and I wouldn't want anyone to forget it forever, (2) one of the characters is named John Mischief, so it should be right up your alley, (3) I came here to ask a question of my own, but saw your question first and got excited because I've never known an answer in a forum before, haha.
    – Frances
    Jun 26, 2020 at 17:29
  • I'll attribute that to my excellent descriptive abilities ;) Good luck with your question
    – johnDanger
    Jun 26, 2020 at 17:36

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