Lewis Barnavelt is a thirteen-year-old boy who lives with his uncle, Jonathan, in New Zebedee, Michigan.


Originally from outside Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Lewis is the only son of Charlie Barnavelt and his wife, both of whom died sometime in 1948 in an automobile accident. After this traumatizing ordeal, Lewis is sent to live with Charlie's brother, Jonathan, in Michigan.

Lewis is very much a loner in his new surroundings, usually content to stay at home and read or visit with his uncle or next-door neighbor Mrs. Zimmermann or even take part in one of their poker games! He does get out of his new home enough to explore New Zebedee though his low self-esteem prevents him from maintaining friendships with those his own age.


John Bellairs' first young protagonist, a timid, chubby boy whose actions and interests are akin to those of the author as a thirteen year-old growing up in Marshall. We are introduced to Lewis' strange but somewhat familiar world in The House with a Clock in its Walls and follow his encounters in The Figure in the Shadows.

Lewis Barnavelt Series
Bellairs Corpus
By John Bellairs
Completed by Brad Strickland
By Brad Strickland
Who's who Lewis Barnavelt | Rose Rita Pottinger | Jonathan Barnavelt | Florence Zimmermann
What's what Barnavelt House | Fountain
Where's there New Zebedee, Michigan