Thursday, September 01, 2005

Sisters Grimm: The Fairy Tale Detectives

After a leisurely vacation, it's time to catch you up on what I've been reading. Earlier this week I read a new children's mystery novel called Sisters Grimm: The Fairy Tale Detectives, book 1 in a new series by Michael Buckley (Abrams, 10/05).

The story follows two young "orphaned" sisters, Daphne and Sabrina Grimm, as they enter into the care of yet another foster family. This time their new guardian claims to be their Grandmother Grimm, but the girls' father told them their grandmother had died. Already suspicious, the girls are whisked into some unbelievable circumstances as their granny takes them to investigate a house smashed by a giant, to meet Mayor Charming, and to deal with police who look an awful lot like pigs. After too many odd incidents to be a hoax, the girls come to accept their detective grandmother and her story that their parents have been taken by evil forces and that fairy tale creatures really do exist in the charmed town of Ferryport Landing.

All fairy tale, nursery rhyme, and other mythical creatures come into a story that explains the history of creatures who immigrated to the United States to avoid persecution in the Old Country. One of the Grimm ancestors placed a charm on their village to insure that no fairy tale creatures, or Everafters, escaped to wreak havoc on regular people. The Everafters are doomed live as prisoners - though with eternal youth - in the charmed village until the last of the Grimm family dies out, so they are less than thrilled to meet the Grimm granddaughters.

This all sounds complicated but is actually pretty interesting as a premise. The action moves quickly after the story is set up and the girls are forced to use their wits after their granny is carried off by a giant. Other main characters include Mr. Canis (granny's mysterious companion), Jack the Giant Killer, and Puck the Prince of Misrule. The series ought to go over well with the princess/fairy crowd as well as mystery lovers. It's pretty well written and funny.

Books 1 and 2 are being released at the same time. Book 2 is titled Sisters Grimm: The Unusual Suspects.

Grade: B+

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