Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

The Sisters Grimm: Book Three - The Problem Child

The Sisters Grimm: Book Three - The Problem Child

Michael Buckley
Illustrator:  Peter Ferguson 
Fiction  Series
For ages 8 to 12
Harry Abrams Inc, 2006   ISBN: 978-0810949140

Sabrina is in a very bad situation. She is facing a horrific monster and a crazed little girl, a little girl who just happens to have Sabrina’s parents in captivity. Thankfully Puck, the fairy king, is with her and Puck is able to help a little to prevent the monster from killing Sabrina. Then a mysterious man arrives on the scene and he further distracts the little girl and her “pet” thus giving Sabrina and Puck a chance to escape.

Once she has recovered from her ordeal sufficiently Sabrina works out that the little girl who is responsible for kidnapping her parents is none other than Little Red Riding Hood. Apparently Little Red Riding Hood went completely crazy hundreds of years ago and it would appear that she is now acquiring a family to replace the one she lost long ago. It does not matter to her that the people she is kidnapping do not want to be her family.

Somehow Sabrina and Daphne have to get their parents out of the clutches of the demented little cloaked Everafter without being eaten by her pet monster who just happens to be a deadly and practically unkillable Jabberwocky.

Then the girl’s uncle arrives on the scene. His arrival is a big surprise because the girls didn’t even know that they had an uncle. Jacob Grimm is funny, loveable, and full of surprises. He also believes in using magic whenever possible. Why not use it if it makes life easier? Sabrina is in total agreement with him, especially if it means that they will be able to get her parents back. Granny Relda however does not agree at all. She believes that there is always a cost to using magic and that Jacob should not use magic the way he does. Hasn’t he already paid a dreadful price for using magic carelessly?

Nevertheless, Uncle Jacob presses on, determined to help his nieces to get their parents back and in the process he gets Sabrina totally hooked on the use of magic. She loves the feeling of power and control it gives her and nothing Granny or Daphne says can convince her that magic can be dangerous. Only when it is almost too late does Sabrina learn how wrong she is.

In this third book in the Sisters Grimm series Michael Buckley takes his readers on yet another fabulous adventure full of wonderful fairy tale characters who never cease to surprise. Sabrina herself discovers that though she wants to find her parents more than anything, she does not want to do so if it means that others have to die in the process. Sometimes the price is just too high. She continues to learn things about herself as she learns the history of her own family and the secrets hidden beneath Ferryport Landing. All too often things and people are not what they seem.

With lashings of humor, wonderful characters, and a terrific tale, this book offers readers entertainment and excellent writing at its best. Who could ask for more.