Tag Archives: Giveaway

The Sisters Grimm (Sort of) Fairy-tale Detectives

I just have to say that I LOVE The Sisters Grimm series (from Amulet, which is an imprint of ABRAMS, who I apparently am obsessed with as every book I’ve picked up recently is theirs). I grabbed the first two in this series on a whim and was absolutely smitten. In book one (there are eight in print with #9 coming next spring! eek!), we are introduce to Sabrina and Daphne Grimm whose parents have inexplicably gone missing, forcing them to go into foster care in New York City. After bouncing from home to home, they learn that they have a grandmother named Granny Relda who will take them in. This is quite the shock seeing as they had both been told she was dead. That is when things start to get really interesting…

Sabrina and Daphne are taken to Granny Relda’s home in a little town called Ferryport Landing only to learn that not only are Fairy-tales real, but that Granny Relda (and thus Sabrina & Daphne) are decedents of Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm and that the children are expected to go into the family business of being fairy-tale detectives. Talk about sensory overload for a kid!

Basically, the Brothers Grimm were not writing stories, but recording histories to educate humans about fairy people (or Everafters as they prefer to be called). They then helped the Everafters escape persecution in Europe and resettle in America. This went pretty well for a while, until some of the Everyafters started getting uppity and thought that the neighboring towns would be pretty nice to have as well. Before they had time to assemble and take over the other towns, Wilhelm Grimm went to the most powerful Everafter, Baba Yaga, and made a deal that would keep all of the Everafters within Ferryport Landing. The catch (because there is always a catch when you make a deal with a witch) was that a Grimm always had to be within Ferryport Landing, otherwise the spell would be broken and the Everafters could run willy-nilly wherever they please.

Fast forward to present day where the Everafters have been stuck in Ferryport landing for what feels like a zillion years to them. The Three Little Pigs comprise the local police force, Prince Charming is the Mayor, and Sleeping Beauty runs the local coffee shop. Things are relatively peaceful, if somewhat awkward at times (Prince Charming has been married to Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella and Snow White at different times, which makes parties pretty tense), but hostility is building against the Grimms. You see, not only are they keeping everyone within Ferryport Landing, but they also are the keepers of magical items, with the help of the Magic Mirror. When you enter the Magic Mirror, you walk into the Hall of Wonders with hundreds of doors labeled with things like, “Magic Wands,” “Pegasus,” and “Magic Beans.” The only thing between the Grimms and certain death at the hands of an angry mob is Mr. Canis, a.k.a. The Big Bad Wolf, who is their loyal companion and protector. (He’s trying to repent after being a murderous, bloodthirsty, Grandma-Eating beast for so long.)

Needless to say, this does not sit well with some of the Everafters. Throw in that there is a secret society of angry, vengeful Everafters called The Red Hand hell bent on war and who (probably) kidnapped Sabrina & Daphne’s parents and you have a whole lot of magical insanity that you can’t put down. It is a perfect book for kids or adults, and I definitely recommend it for those reluctant readers out there. Puck’s antics alone will keep them entertained.

My only criticism of these books is that the Grimms are supposed to be fairy-tale detectives… but the characters aren’t all from fairy-tales. I understand wanting to have characters easily recognizable to kids, but there were a lot of folktales and literary characters that pop up that didn’t always make sense to me when there are so many amazing fairy-tales out there to pull from. Being the child of a storyteller, I am well acquainted with the 398 section of the library, which includes folktales, fairy-tales, myths & legends, and when Miss Muffet and her Spider friend popped up in Ferryport Landing, I couldn’t help but go, “Hey now! That is not a fairy-tale!” Honestly, it didn’t detract from my enjoyment of the books. You get sucked into what is happening and you are willing to believe whatever happens within the pages, even if I am bit-picky about where the characters come from.

We are giving away a copy of the first book in the series… but you have to earn it! Check out the list of characters below and answer in the comments section if they come from a folktale, fairy-tale, or other. Whoever gets it right wins!

1. Rumpelstiltskin

2. Little Red Riding Hood

3. Baba Yaga

4. Little Miss Muffet

5. The Queen of Hearts

6. Snow White

7. Puck

8. Oscar Diggs, aka The Wizard of Oz or The Great and Powerful Oz

9. The Little Mermaid

10. The Blue Fairy

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Blogging on a Phone is Way Harder than you would think.

So I have been trying to blog on my phone, but it just wasn’t happening. The Javits Center is a cell phone death trap that eats your battery and denies you service. However, I am now in the comfort of my sisters apartment in Brooklyn and everyone is thankfully still asleep, even my little niece Ruby.

The past two days have been insane. BEA always is. You walk into Javits and are assaulted by noise, booths and throngs of people. You never know who you are going to meet. I bumped into Flavor Flav and Jane Lynch and Rhymenoverous happen upon Tyra herself. Talk about three names I never expected to use in the same sentence. That is the beauty of this show. You’re just walking around, seeing the sights and then there is William Joyce or Katherine Paterson signing their new books and you geek out a little and possibly gush because you have all of their books and the binding is broken and pages are falling out because you have read them too many times and OH MY GOD WHY DID YOU KILL LESLIE INBRIDGE TO TERABITHIA?! DO YOU KNOW HOW THAT KILLED ME AS A CHILD?! Love the new book though! Big fan right here… Then you run away hoping that they will meet someone more insane than you. That is about the time you run into your sort of cousin, who has the same obscure last name as you, so you know you’re related, especially since she’s a librarian and you both blog, but you’ve only met on Twitter. (Yes, this happened. Hi, Maura!) Not only do you meet her, but you get to put all sorts of faces to Twitter names because there are book bloggers everywhere and it lets you know that there are people in the world outside of the books and blogs, which is nice to remember from time to time. That is why everyone should go to BEA at least once.


Moving on… I tend to get really excited about the books that I find that maybe I hadn’t heard of before. We’ll being doing a whole post on what I brought back from BEA and what we are most hyped about reading, but I do want to tell you about one that I am really excited about called Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes (Amulet, August 2011). Amulet is an imprint of Abrams, which is a publisher that I keep falling more and more in love with and hope to review many more of their upcoming books. Peter Nimble is a ten-year-old blind orphan who has taken to a life of thievery. One day he steals a mysterious box that contains three pairs of magical eyes. I am not sure what each pair does, but the copy on the back of the book says that the first pair he tries transports him to a hidden island where he is presented with a quest. Unforgettable swashbuckling adventures ensue. How is that not the most fabulous book EVER?! I can’t wait to dive into it.

We have many more books to tell you about and a few to give away… which brings me to Maggie Stiefvater‘s upcoming book Forever (Scholastic, July 12, 2011). I grabbed an ARC of this at the Scholastic booth and since I’m not really a Maggie Stiefvater fan, I thought that I would share it with you fine people. Leave a comment about why you want or should get the book. The most convincing argument wins… GO!

On that note, have a lovely day and thanks for stopping by!