|Magic and Other Misdemeanors|
|Publication date:||December 1, 2007|
|Published by:||Harry N. Abrams|
Once Upon a Crime
Tales from the Hood
A Grimm destiny
In their latest adventure, intrepid fairy-tale detectives Sabrina and Daphne Grimm investigate a reash of magical thefts that might add up to a very grim future for thier family, who are not so popular in Ferryport Landing these days. With Granny Relda desperately scrambling to pay Mayor Heart's outrageous tax on humans, the Sisters Grimm tackle theri first case solo - with a little help from the troublemaker Puck, of course. Meanwhile, their old friend Mr.Canis seem to be be losing his grip on his human self, becoming more like the Big Bad Wolf every day. Can Sabrina and Daphne solve the crime and change their family's future for the better.
"For Alison. You put a spell on me."
"Many thanks to my Editor, Susan Van Metre, whose insight and hard work continues to make this a great series. Special thanks to Maggie Lehrman for her careful editing and extraordinary ideas; Jason Wells from Amulet for making me famous and keeping me on time; my wfe and literary agent, Alison Fargis, who's willing to be the bad guy when I'm to much of a coward. A big thanks to Joe Deasy, who continues to read these stories over and over and gives me great advice. Thanks to my Pacific Northwest Cheerleader, Stefanie Frank, as well as Ms. Mock and her class at Hammond Hill Elementary. Bigh shout out to Mark Rifkin and Ellen Scordato for their many big shout-outs. And a very special thank you to Donald Schershcligt and his wonderful family. I eagerly await Donald's first novel and the day I can say, I knew him when."
- Under Construction*
Though Puck tries all he can with his fairy wings, he cannot stop the force that's dragging him into a black gaping hole above him. Sabrina, hoping their combined weight can anchor them down, grabs onto his foot as he flies past, but is only yanked off the ground. Nearby Daphne catches onto Sabrina's leg, but is soon flying towards the hole as well. Puck is pulled into the hole until all that is seen are his sneakers. Sabrina tells him to try and fight it, but even she knows that the force is too strong. She silently prays a prayer, and the hole quadruples in size.
Chapter 1 (Four Days Ago)
In the morning, Granny Relda wakes up Sabrina and Daphne and tells them they must do some escape training today before their guests arrive. Escape training is part of the sisters' education to become full-fledged detectives. To pass, Sabrina and Daphne must depart a certain distance from their grandmother until she blows a whistle, which signals them to return to her. To do so, the girls have to successfully escape from their pursuer (Puck), who never makes it easy for them. Relda tells them to "dress very, very warmly."
The day's escape training is at the icy Snow Queen's Homeland (accessible through the Hall Of Wonders). A booby trap along the path tempt the sisters to hide in the woods, but Sabrina knows from past attempts that Puck expects them to go the woods. Evading chimpanzees and Puck's glop grenades, the girls make it back to Relda, finally passing their escape training. Then Sabrina talks with Mirror, saying that the only thing she wants for her birthday - four days away - was to find a way to wake up her parents.
Soon guests arrive at the Grimm house for a party Relda arranged to try to find a cure to the sleeping spell placed upon Henry and Veronica Grimm. The people that arrived were the Three, Baba Yaga, Briar Rose with her fairy godmothers, and Snow White. Cinderella or "Cindy", as she's called in her popular radio talk show, brings along her human husband, Tom Baxter. Some suggest for Prince Charming to kiss Veronica awake but they conclude it may lead to her falling in love with him, and also Charming had disappeared once Queen of Hearts became mayor, much to Snow's distress. To Sabrina's frustration, no good solution for her parents is found, and the guests leave.
Later in the night, Baba Yaga returns to the Grimm house and angrily accuses Sabrina of somehow stealing her Wand of Merlin. Relda promises the witch that they'll help her find the thief, and in the morning Relda, Sabrina, Daphne and Puck go to her hut, where Daphne finds a mouse hole but nothing exceptionally unusual. Baba Yaga vows that the next day she'll take matters into her own hands.
Later the Grimm detectives investigate Morgan le Fay's house after she reports that she had her Wonder Clock, which also served as a time-machine, stolen the night of the party. There they meet Puss in Boots, who reports that le Fay had mice in her home. The Grimms go to the police station to discover that firstly: the new Sheriff Nottingham had freed all the criminals (including the Lilliputians, whom Relda was suspecting) and secondly, an expensive property tax had been issued to all humans living in Ferryport Landing to get rid of them. That night during a sudden storm Sabrina sees her Uncle Jake running outside and getting shot by an arrow.
Sabrina rushes outside to Uncle Jake, who strangely seems older. He vanishes after she calls for help. The next morning Relda pays her taxes only to get an outrageous addition to the tax. Relda must focus solely on the tax, so Puck, Jacob, and the sisters investigate the case - first by visiting Briar Rose, Jake's girlfriend, at her coffeshop. They also pass by Tom Baxter and Cindy's three assistants and visit Frau Pfefferkuchenhaus (the witch from Hansel and Gretel), who reveals she had her vial from the Fountain of Youth ripped right from her metal locker. Believing that the three thefts were connected, the Grimms ask the witch what could three such magical items be used for; she replies that they could be combined to form a very powerful enchantment. They leave her dentist office and see Baba Yaga shooting fireballs all over town.
To the Grimms' suprise, Native Americans appear out of a black storm cloud and drive Baba Yaga out. Puck and Jacob leave to keep track of the witch, while Relda makes a trip to the bank - leaving the sisters with Mr. Canis, who suggests they practice tracking him in the woods. Another strange storm appears as the girls search for him. To their terror, the Big Bad Wolf arrives to devour them when they are saved two warrior women as well as a fairy man. One of the women, a blond one, seems to recognize Sabrina, but the sisters run away to the bank to find Granny Relda and the secret weapon to stop the Wolf.
Sabrina and Daphne discover that the bank, as well as all of the town, have been devastated and burned. Furthermore, the destruction seemed to have happened long ago. Suddenly, a fire-breathing dragon spots them and almost kills them when the mysterious adults from the woods arrive via Baba Yaga's hut and save them again. They travel to a fortress of Everafter refugees that fought against the Scarlet Hand where the girls see the long-lost Prince Charming. It is soon explained to the sisters that the storms they kept seeing were tears in time, and the tear they were sucked into sent them nearly fifteen years into the future. In this future, Daphne was cold and scarred, Sabrina was married to a grown Puck, and the Scarlet Hand was in complete control. Charming was captured in a tear too, and is determined to save Snow White (who is dead in the future) once they return to their proper time. To do that, however, Charming and future Daphne had to get through Sheriff Nottingham to retrieve a magic detector, which is how Daphne got her scar. The next day a tear in time is found over Snow White's grave and the Sabrina, Daphne, and Charming agree to take the chance to enter it, though it wouldn't necessarily get them back to their correct time.
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