Read Aloud Book: The Bell at Sealy Head by Patricia McKillip

  • Chapter 23 The End

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 13:37

    Loose endings get wrapped up in the world of Sealey Head.

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  • Chapter 22 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 12:18

    The newly un-transformed Queen Hydria leads Ridley and Ysabo to confront Nemos Moore.

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  • Chapter 22 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 11:09

    Ysabo and Ridley are trapped in a doorless stone chamber that holds the great bell.

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  • Chapter 21 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 10:06

    After Judd and Gwyneth arrive at Aislinn house, they talk to Emma and Miranda Beryl about what has been happening.

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  • Chapter 21 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 6:39

    The bell rings unexpectantly in the morning, and Miranda Beryl and Emma are worried about what may have happened to Ridley Dow.

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  • Chapter 20 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 8:50

    In Gwyneth's story, the fictional inhabitants of Sealey Head come to a bad end, and Gwyneth and Judd decide to go to Aislinn House in search of Ridley Dow.

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  • Chapter 20 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 8:12

    Gwyneth continues her story, and talks to Aunt Phoebe about Judd Cauley.

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  • Chapter 19 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 16:20

    Ysabo speaks to Ridley Dow about breaking the spell that controls Aislinn House, but they are interrupted.

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  • Chapter 19 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 7:36

    When Princess Ysabo tries to up the tower to feed the crows, the door is unexpectedly locked.

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  • Chapter 18 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 11:06

    The Sproule siblings and Miranda Beryl come to the inn to see Ridley Dow, who is feeling worse than before.

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  • Chapter 18 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 7:17

    The morning after the party, Judd Cauley is up early and talks to Ridley Dow.

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  • Chapter 17 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 15:22

    At the Sproule's party, Gwyneth has a romantic interlude.

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  • Chapter 17 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 13:00

    Gwyneth Blair reads aloud the latest section of the story she is writing, and later goes to a party at the Sproule's.

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  • Chapter 16 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 13:10

    Emma opens a door to find Ridley Dow being attacked by crows in the other Aislinn House.

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  • Chapter 16 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 7:42

    Emma talks with Miranda Beryl who asks her about any strangers recently come to Sealy Head.

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  • Chapter 15 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 9:36

    Judd gets a visit from Gwyneth and Daria.

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  • Chapter 15 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 7:13

    Judd Cauley talks to his father about the inn full of guests.

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  • Chapter 14 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 17:37

    Gwyneth Blair meets Miranda Beryl and her guest Mr. Moren, and then on the way home she and and the Sprouls stop by the inn.

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  • Chapter 14 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 6:51

    The Sprouls and Gwyneth ride to Aislinn House to meet Miranda Beryl.

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  • Chapter 13 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 11:18

    Ridley Dow reappears and wants to follow Ysabo to learn about the ritual actions she completes each day.

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  • Chapter 13 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 9:11

    Ysabo sees Ridley Dow step through the doorway into her world, but then he disappears. 

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  • Chapter 12 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 5:15

    Miranda Beryl and all her guests arrive at Aislinn House, and Miranda announces that they are all staying.

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  • Chapter 12 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 9:43

    Ridley Dow and Hesper come to see Emma at Aislinn House, hoping for Ridley to get a glimpse of the magical world through the doors.

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  • Chapter 11 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 5:09

    Mr. Pilchard turns out to be an incredible cook, and is officially hired. Judd and Mr. Quinn continue to wonder where Ridley Dow has disappeared to.

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  • Chapter 11 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 7:44

    Judd Cauley is just trying to figure out how to cook mutton for dinner, when a man named Mr. Pilchard shows up at the inn to apply for the job of cook.

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  • Chapter 10 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 9:48

    Aunt Phoebe thinks that Gwyneth should marry Raven Sproul, but Gwyneth doesn't agree at all.

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  • Chapter 10 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 6:57

    Gwyneth Blair continues to write her story of the ship arriving in Sealy Head, and goes with her aunt on some errands in town.

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  • Chapter 9 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 6:50

    Judd Cauley meets Gwyneth Blair and her sister Pandora on his way into town.

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  • Chapter 9 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 6:52

    Judd Cauley promotes Mrs. Quinn to head housekeeper, but that means he either needs to hire a new cook, or do the cooking himself.

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  • Chapter 8 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 6:44

    When Emma returns to Aislinn House in the evening, she learns that Lady Eglantyne's great niece will be arriving in two days, and that she's bring a large group of friend and servants with her.

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  • Chapter 8 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 10:39

    Emma goes to visit her mother on her afternoon off. She and her mother talk about Aislinn House, and Princess Ysabo and the world that Emma glimpses through open doorways.

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  • Chapter 7 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 10:11

    Ysabo attends the nightly feast in the great hall. All the knights and ladies have embroidered chairs with matching decorative goblets. There is an announcement that Ysabo will marry the still anonymous knight in a few weeks, at the full moon.

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  • Chapter 7 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 8:51

    We learn more about all the seemingly meaningless tasks that Ysabo must perform each day, as part of the ritual.

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  • Chapter 6 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 5:34

    Ridley talks to Gwyneth about magic and the bell, and he may or may not have used magic to light candles across the room. 

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  • Chapter 6 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 11:18

    Judd Cauley and Ridley Dow go to the Blairs for tea. Judd has a chance to talk briefly to Gwyneth before they are interrupted.

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  • Chapter 5 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 6:03

    Ysabo talks with Emma through doorway between their worlds, and Emma invites her to come across to the world of Sealy Head.

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  • Chapter 5 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 9:40

    The Princess Ysabo thinks about growing up and learning the rituals she must complete every day, including feeding the crows, and much more.

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  • Chapter 4 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 9:30

    In the bookshop, Judd Cauley talks to Gwyneth Blair, who asks him and Ridley Dow to tea, despite the Sproul siblings' best efforts to pull her away.

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  • Chapter 4 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 10:19

    Judd Cauley and Ridley Dow agree to walk down to the booksellers in Sealey Head, and Judd buys some seafood that he hopes Mrs. Quinn won't entirely ruin when she cooks it.

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  • Chapter 3 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 8:27

    Raven Sproul, Daria Sproul and Gwyneth Blair arrive at Aislinn house to visit the dying Lady Eglantyne, who is lost in a world of dreams.

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  • Chapter 3 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 10:48

    Since housemaid Emma was a child, she has opened doors in Aislinn House that led her to another world, where Emma has befriended Princess Ysabo.

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  • Chapter 2 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 8:17

    Gwyneth reads her latest story to her father and her younger siblings.

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  • Chapter 2 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 11:13

    Gwyneth Blair writes the story of the sunset bell over and over, with a new explanation in each new story.

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  • Chapter 1 Part 2

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 8:47

    A stranger arrives at the Inn at Sealy Head.

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  • Chapter 1 Part 1

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 9:07

    We meet Judd Cauley, proprietor the Inn at Sealy Head, and his blind father, and learn about the unseen bell that rings at sunset.

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  • Introduction to the Novel

    by Ms. Henderson and Patricia McKillip Length: 2:19

    Book summary and about the posting schedule

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  • During the month of May, Ms. Henderson is excited to read aloud a book by one of her favorite authors. Patricia McKillip's writing is lyrical and vivid, with intricate fantasy plots and memorable characters. The Bell at Sealy Head has this summary on the inside cover:

    Sealy Head is a small town on the edge of the ocean, a sleepy place. The prominant families in town are the Blairs, wealthy merchants, and the Sproules, gentleman farmers. It might be possible, just barely, to count the Cauleys, who own the Inn at Sealy Head. Raven Sproul, who speaks of nothing but horses, is courting Gwyneth Blair. Gwyneth, who prefers to speak of books, fancies Judd Cauley. 

    On the outskirts of town is the one truely great house, Aislinn House, where the aged Lady Eglantyne lies dying in spite of everything her doctor, her maid, and her maid's mother, the eccentric herbalist can manage to do for her.

    All of them--and a few intriguing strangers--have a role to play in an ancient story of magic that will explain why at sunset everyone in Sealy Head hears the ringing of a bell that no one can see. And why sometimes the doors at Aislinn House open not to its own dusty rooms, but to the wild majesty of a castle full of knights and princesses.

    I will be posting a chapter each weekday, and I hope you enjoy the book as much as I do!

Bell at Sealy Head Book Cover