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The Problem Child (Sisters Grimm Series #3)

The Problem Child (Sisters Grimm Series #3)

4.7 185
by Michael Buckley, Peter Ferguson

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In book three of the series, Sabrina and Daphne Grimm tackle their most important mystery: Who kidnapped their parents more than a year ago? Sabrina enters the hideout of the Scarlet Hand, the sinister group of Everafters who are keeping her parents prisoner. She has a chance to rescue her mom and dad but is foiled by the most famous fairy-tale character in the world.


In book three of the series, Sabrina and Daphne Grimm tackle their most important mystery: Who kidnapped their parents more than a year ago? Sabrina enters the hideout of the Scarlet Hand, the sinister group of Everafters who are keeping her parents prisoner. She has a chance to rescue her mom and dad but is foiled by the most famous fairy-tale character in the world. With the help of her little sister (who might be tougher than Sabrina realizes) and a long-lost relative, Sabrina finds a powerful weapon for fighting her enemies, and discovers that magic has a high price.

Editorial Reviews

In the intensely infernal installment of this fairy-tale detective saga, the sisters Grimm come face to face with their parents' kidnappers. To overcome the machinations of the dreaded Scarlet Hand, the sisters must find a way to reconstruct a weapon capable of killing the Jabberwocky. Not so elementary, but a lot of fun.
Publishers Weekly
And speaking of sisters... book three in the Sisters Grimm series, The Problem Child by Michael Buckley, continues the adventures of 11-year-old Sabrina and seven-year-old Daphne, first introduced in The Fairy-Tale Detectives (PW praised the book's "good-natured inanity and eccentric personalities"), descendents of Jacob and Wilhelm. Here they set out to solve the most important mystery of their lives: what happened to their parents more than a year ago? The search for answers leads them to the most famous fairy-tale character of all. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
If 11-year-old Sabrina Grimm could choose her happily ever after, it would definitely include getting her parents back. Since they were kidnapped almost two years ago, she and her little sister Daphne have had to deal with a lot: foster homes, child labor, and finally being discovered by their Granny Relda and introduced to the family business of serving as fairy-tale detectives for the enchanted town of Ferryport Landing. When Sabrina's mysterious Uncle Jake shows up to help rescue her parents, she realizes she still doesn't know her family's full history, but she'll have to confront it regardless if she has any hope of seeing her parents again. Buckley's book is lively and captivating, and it will appeal especially to readers whose love of fairy tales goes beyond standard animated versions to the stories of the Brothers Grimm and Hans Christian Anderson. The book's one struggle may be finding an age-appropriate audience: Sabrina is immersed in not-quite-teenage angst, but similarly younger readers may not be ready to confront the book's evil and overweight ‘Little' Mermaid or its schizophrenic Little Red Riding Hood. Nevertheless, The Problem Child is an exciting, inventive tale. Age Range: Ages 12 to 15. REVIEWER: Cara Chancellor (Vol. 42, No. 1)
Children's Literature
In the third book from "The Sisters Grimm" series, Sabrina and Daphne Grimm are pitted against Little Red Riding Hood. Psychologically damaged after seeing her grandmother eaten by the Big Bad Wolf, Little Red Riding Hood kidnaps Sabrina and Daphne's parents. If that weren't bad enough, the Jabberwocky has appeared and causes all sorts of trouble. Aided by her uncle Jake, Sabrina tries to find some magic that can help her with these problems. Nevertheless, she discovers that magic can sometimes be too powerful for the users to handle. While Sabrina's plight is interesting, the true story sometimes gets lost in the mob of fairy tale figures that often show up briefly then disappear into the throng. The majority of fairy tale cameos are interesting and Buckley gets points for using the Hans Christian Anderson "Little Mermaid" story rather than the Disney (resulting in something rarely seen: a fat mermaid!). Ferguson's black-and-white illustrations beautifully accent this entertaining story. 2006, Amulet Books/Harry N. Abrams, Ages 8 to 12.
—Amie Rose Rotruck
Compared to the first series book, this one was not as well written. It deviated from its "fairy tale" policy, introducing characters such as Robin Hood, the Jabberwocky, and Baba Yaga. Also the choice of villain was not very believable. The author seems to be going overboard with the "fairy tales are not what you expect." Having not read the second book, however, I was still able to understand what had happened previously. All in all, the author could have done better. This book seems geared for a younger audience than intended. VOYA CODES: 3Q 3P J (Readable without serious defects; Will appeal with pushing; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9). 2006, Amulet Books/Harry N. Abrams, 304p., Ages 12 to 15.
—Sara Garcia, Teen Reviewer
School Library Journal
Gr 4-6-Sabrina Grimm, 11, and her 7-year-old sister, Daphne, are still on the trail of "The Scarlet Hand," which has kidnapped their parents. On the way to rescuing them, the sisters meet their likable Uncle Jake, whom they had never heard of before. Granny Relda had arranged for everyone in town to forget him after he inadvertently broke the spell that kept a deranged Little Red Riding Hood in the asylum. The book is loaded with cameos by fairy-tale characters, including Prince Charming as playboy turned sleazy politician. Although they will delight fairy-tale fans, some of the most interesting figures get short shrift. Puck, who combines magic with mischief in a way that both attracts and repels Sabrina, disappears from the action early on. Granny Relda's gentleman friend and every tale's wicked wolf is resurrected only at the end of the novel. Still, there is plenty of plucky Sabrina, nurturing Granny Relda, and Daphne. The end leaves plenty for the next book to resolve. Each chapter starts with a menacing silhouette, and black-and-white full-page illustrations add more macabre details. Recommend this to anyone who is craving a bit of dark humor rolled up with whimsy and adventure.-Tina Zubak, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, PA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Poor choreography in the battle scenes drags the latest entry in this otherwise delicious series below par. After a brief but necessary recap, Buckley plunges his two young sleuths into further developments in their search for their snatched parents. These include the appearance of a reckless sorcerer uncle; repeated attacks from a savage Jabberwock ridden by Little Red Riding Hood (here a crazed homicidal maniac in the wake of what the Big Bad Wolf did to her family); and a desperate search for the vorpal blade, which is not just the only way to kill a Jabberwock, but also a key to Faerie. The dialogue ("I'm a fish that talks and you're having trouble with me granting wishes?"), set pieces capped by a nerve-wracking visit to the hut of cannibal and soap-opera addict Baba Yaga and occasional theatrical illustrations from Ferguson are as clever as ever. But the headlong pace too often stumbles over outrageously destructive, lightning-swift attacks that somehow always leave characters time to ruminate, converse or fumble about in pockets for magical defenses. Even confirmed fans will hope for tighter writing in future outings. (Fantasy. 10-12)

Product Details

Abrams, Harry N., Inc.
Publication date:
Sisters Grimm Series , #3
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Sales rank:
File size:
4 MB
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Meet the Author

Michael BuckleyÆs previous books include a New York Times bestseller, a Kirkus Best Fantasy Book, and two Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum winners. He has written and developed television shows for several networks. He lives with his wife, Alison, in New York City.

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The Problem Child (Sisters Grimm Series #3) 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 184 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The Sisters Grimm: The Problem Child is the third installment in the continuing tale of Sabrina and Daphne Grimm. Nearly two years ago the girls¿ lives were turned upside down when their parents disappeared, the only clue to the mystery being an ominous blood red hand print found inside their empty car. The sisters sent the next year and a half running away from a series of deranged foster families before we meet them, bound for Ferryport Landing and a woman claiming to be their grandmother, a grandmother they were told was dead. Now, with Granny Relda to guide them, the Grimm sisters have entered into their birthright as guardians of Ferryport Landing and the Everafters. In their first case as fairy tale detectives the girls, along with their new found Granny Relda, Mr. Canis, Puck, and Elvis, defeat Jack (of beanstalk fame) in his attempt to loose the giants and return to glory by killing them. This encounter brings them once again in contact with the Red Hand. In the second book, The Unusual Suspects, Sabrina and Daphne are enrolled in school. Daphne is the apple of her new teacher, Snow White¿s, eye, while Sabrina battles both her own growing anger and the horrors of sixth grade. Sabrina learns, with seemingly deadly consequences, that her anger could mean the end for everyone she loves. In the last chapter Sabrina is brought face to face with the Red Hand, but what she finds is beyond all of her expectations. In The Problem Child all the sins of the family Grimm and those closest to them come back around. Sabrina discovers that her parents' captor is none other than Little Red Riding Hood, driven to insanity by the Big Bad Wolf (otherwise known to us as Mr. Canis). In the search for their parents the girls will find and face a long lost uncle, new found love, old inner demons, and finally the strength to choose good when tempted by a powerfully seductive evil. Several new and wonderful characters are introduced in this latest book, including the Little Mermaid, and a few old characters are more fully developed. For The Problem Child Buckley has gone beyond the most commonly known fairy tales to find his characters you may have to search a bit to read more about them. Be sure to follow The Sisters Grimm in this dark, though often humorous, tale.
cocteau307 More than 1 year ago
as a 30 year old female, this is hardly the genre of book you would expect to see in my personal library. but alas, this author's idea turned fantasy story is a brilliant escape from the world around. full of genuinely quick wit (i laughed aloud several times). it's charm is remarkably pleasing. read them from start to finish- there are several in the series, and would be good for bedtimes stories for a younger audience. this particular book in the series is my favorite so far.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is absorbing. I just love it! Once I start reading it I can't put it down. IT ROCKS. This book is my favorite out of them all because it is exciting, thrilling, and sweet. Also, action packed.
Guest More than 1 year ago
a deranged fairy tale character. an overweight mermaid. a canibal witch. the fairy tale characters have changed a whole lot, along with the characters in the series. this book was excellent, and it ends with a cliff hanger. a must read. you'll never look at your favorite fairy tales the same way again.
Reads_a_lot More than 1 year ago
This is my favorite series, but you must know this is the third book, so read them in order!
This is most defintely my favorite of the series! It was SO SO SOO funny! Best series EVER!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book has action,suspence,romance,humor, and emotion- all the elements you need to make a really good book!!!<3 :D I LOVED IT!!!<3<3<3<3: D : D : D : D The whole series is good!<3 : D
cypresstree More than 1 year ago
This is one of the best books I have ever read. The story is fascinating, and my favorite part is...well, I can't tell you that, because that would give away one of the best parts of the story! All, I can say is, if you are a Sisters Grimm fan, you will DEFINITELY want to read this book. I would recommend it for 8-13 year olds.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was really coooool.I recommend anyone reading this review buy this book. It was really really good but before you buy this I suggest you buy the firsts ones. All the books at some part were really creepy and they were especially really funny.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love these book they are sooooo captivating
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love these books. Once you pick it up you can't put it down.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've read this book and it was an excelent book. It has so much suspence and it kept me wanting to read more!!! I would recomend it to people ages 8-12. It is a great book! Trust me you'll enjoy it a lot!
Nani-Kissimmee More than 1 year ago
Talking of clean fun adventures for any age. I bought the series for my 11 year old grandaughter and belive me she can't put the book down. She love it so much that she reads the story to her 6 yr old sister and got her hooked on the storyline. Must read for everyone in the family. I think we have started a new family tradition.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have to say, this is one of my favorite books in the series! The thrills and intensity are amasing! The way Buckley describes Sabrina's passion for magic is quite interesting. I like it how, eventually Sabrina learns to let go and get rid of the magic that she has such a strong addiction to. I think it is intersting how Buckley chooses this book to build a relationship between Puck and Sabrina, at first, but then reading the rest of the books, there is no other place that could have been more perfect!
Guest More than 1 year ago
It is soooo good, it explains alot, I love it, RARGH! I have to wait a week for the 4th one at the public library!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just loved this book. It's totally my favorite from the series! I just love how the Puck and Sabrina romance grows even if I think they're just a little young. It's a great book full of reunions, romance, mystery, and excitement. I'd give this book a 10 if that was a choice!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I think the romance between them grows greatly in this book. It is so great the way Buckley does these books. I am waiting on theedge of my seat for the 4th book. I want to find out more about puck and sabrina.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This sisters grimm series is very underrated. I highly recommend you read this you will not be disappointed.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Yeah sorry theres 2 of me im on my old account sorry
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
U there?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love your stories. I don't know who you are or how old you are. Maybe you can tell me. Call me at 1760-951-0083. That is only if you around eleven years old. If my mother picks up tell her you are Alliyah's friend.