Ironwood Tree (Spiderwick Chronicles Series #4)

( 40 )

Overview

First a pack of vile, smelly goblins snatch Simon. Then a band of elves try to entrap Jared. Why is the entire faerie world so eager to get their hands on Spiderwick's Guide? And will the Grace kids be left alone, now that the Guide has mysteriously disappeared? Don't count on it.
At school, someone is running around pretending to be Jared, and it's not Simon. To make matters even worse, now Mallory has disappeared and something foul in the water is killing off all the plants ...

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Overview

First a pack of vile, smelly goblins snatch Simon. Then a band of elves try to entrap Jared. Why is the entire faerie world so eager to get their hands on Spiderwick's Guide? And will the Grace kids be left alone, now that the Guide has mysteriously disappeared? Don't count on it.
At school, someone is running around pretending to be Jared, and it's not Simon. To make matters even worse, now Mallory has disappeared and something foul in the water is killing off all the plants and animals for miles around. Clues point to the old abandoned quarry, just outside of town. Dwarves have taken over an abandoned mine there. And the faerie world's abuzz with the news that a creature with plans to rule the world has offered them a gift to join with him — he's given them a queen...

After Mallory is kidnapped at her fencing meet, Jared and Simon search for her near an old quarry and find themselves amidst dwarves and goblins.

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  • Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi
    Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi  

Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The fourth episode of Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi's Spiderwick Chronicles is here and more spellbinding than ever! When the Grace children and their mom attend Mallory's fencing competition, Jared spies an odd-looking fellow rooting through Mallory's duffel bag. The problem is, the thief looks just like Jared himself, and when the boy confronts his mysterious double with a knife -- iron is known to repel faeries -- the "Not-Jared" disappears and Jared winds up almost expelled from school. But when Mallory disappears, a trip to the quarry results in a harrowing meeting with dwarves, a run-in with a googly-eyed "knocker," a scheme to rescue their sister from a strange sleep, and finally, a startling fight over the book. All may look hopeless for the Grace kids, but thankfully, help is right at home. A page-turning installment that even includes an image of Jared's expulsion letter, The Ironwood Tree packs the punch that fans have come to love.
From the Publisher
"With their evocative gothic-style pencil drawings and color illustrations, rhyming riddles, supernatural lore, and well-drawn characters, these books read like old-fashioned ripping yarns."

New York Times Book Review

"The books wallow in their dusty Olde Worlde charm: Faeries! Dumbwaiters! Attics! But then, reading has an old-fashioned charm too."

Time magazine

"Appealing characters, well-measured suspense and an inviting package will lure readers...Youngsters may well find themselves glancing over their shoulders."

Publishers Weekly, starred review

Publishers Weekly
The penultimate volume in The Spiderwick Chronicles, Book 4: The Ironwood Tree by Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black pits Jared and Simon Grace against quarry-dwelling dwarves who have kidnapped their sister, Mallory. The children must escape these and other dangers that surface as a new arch-villain arises at the book's conclusion, prepping readers for the final installment. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Time

"The books wallow in their dusty Olde Worlde charm: Faeries! Dumbwaiters! Attics! But then, reading has an old-fashioned charm too."

New York Times Book Review

"With their evocative gothic-style pencil drawings and color illustrations, rhyming riddles, supernatural lore, and well-drawn characters, these books read like old-fashioned ripping yarns."

Publishers Weekly

"Appealing characters, well-measured suspense and an inviting package will lure readers...Youngsters may well find themselves glancing over their shoulders."

Children's Literature
Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black spin a tale of contemporary kids plagued by faeries (spelled the old-fashioned way). The Ironwood Tree, Book 4 of the "Spiderwick Chronicles," continues the adventures of Simon, Jared and Mallory Grace. After her fencing match, Mallory mysteriously disappears. Simon and Jared must puzzle out a stone-chipped riddle to discover her whereabouts. Imprisoned by dwarves and menaced by metal dogs, the youngsters witness the first treacherous battle of Mulgarth, an evil being plotting a world takeover. Hard on the heels of the popular Harry Potter series and Lord of the Rings movies, this fantasy will have kids flying through its pages and eager for Book Five, the conclusion. DiTerlizzi's black-and-white map and illustrations reveal fascinating specifics of the faerie world. 2004, Simon and Schuster, Ages 8 to 12.
—Mary Quattlebaum
School Library Journal
Gr 3-6-The Grace children are back for their fourth adventure in the quest to understand and protect Arthur Spiderwick's guide, a book that offers information about the faerie world. Mallory, the oldest, goes missing from a fencing match. The twins, Jared and Simon, must solve a riddle to save her from evil dwarves who want to create a world totally out of metal with their sister as their queen. This installment in the fast-paced series continues with short chapters and well-developed, likable characters. Black-and-white drawings enhance the suspenseful mood. Reluctant readers and fans alike will enjoy this adventure and look forward to the finale.-Krista Tokarz, Cuyahoga County Public Library, OH Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780689859397
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
  • Publication date: 4/6/2004
  • Series: Spiderwick Chronicles Series , #4
  • Pages: 128
  • Sales rank: 98,728
  • Age range: 7 - 11 Years
  • Lexile: 650L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 4.60 (w) x 0.60 (h) x 7.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Holly Black

Holly Black is the author of bestselling contemporary fantasy books for kids and teens. Some of her titles include The Spiderwick Chronicles (with Tony DiTerlizzi), The Modern Faerie Tale series, the Curse Workers series, Doll Bones, and The Coldest Girl in Coldtown. She has been a finalist for the Mythopoeic Award, a finalist for an Eisner Award, and the recipient of both an Andre Norton Award and a Newbery Honor. She lives in New England with her husband and son in a house with a secret door. Visit her at BlackHolly.com.

Tony DiTerlizzi is a New York Times bestselling author and illustrator who has been creating books with Simon & Schuster for more than a decade. From his fanciful picture books like Jimmy Zangwow’s Out-of-this-World Moon Pie Adventure, Adventure of Meno (with his wife, Angela), and The Spider & The Fly (a Caldecott Honor book), to chapter books like Kenny and The Dragon and The Search for WondLa, Tony always imbues his stories with a rich imagination. His middle grade series, The Spiderwick Chronicles (with Holly Black), has sold millions of copies, been adapted into a feature film, and has been translated in more than thirty countries. You can visit him at DiTerlizzi.com.

Tony DiTerlizzi is a New York Times bestselling author and illustrator who has been creating books with Simon & Schuster for more than a decade. From his fanciful picture books like Jimmy Zangwow’s Out-of-this-World Moon Pie Adventure, Adventure of Meno (with his wife, Angela), and The Spider & The Fly (a Caldecott Honor book), to chapter books like Kenny and The Dragon and The Search for WondLa, Tony always imbues his stories with a rich imagination. His middle grade series, The Spiderwick Chronicles (with Holly Black), has sold millions of copies, been adapted into a feature film, and has been translated in more than thirty countries. You can visit him at DiTerlizzi.com.

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Read an Excerpt

Chapter Two: IN WHICH the Grace Twins Are Triplets

Jared couldn't move from the doorway. He heard the clanging of swords and cheering, but the sounds seemed to come from far away. He watched in horror as the coach confronted his double. The man got red in the face, and some of the other players looked at Jared's double in shock.

"Great." Jared grimaced. There was no way he could explain this.

The coach pointed toward the large gym door, and he watched Not-Jared stalk toward it — and toward him. As Not-Jared got closer to Jared, it smirked. Jared clenched his hands into fists.

Not-Jared passed Jared without a single glance, slamming through the double doors. Jared wanted to find some way to wipe that smile off its face. He followed after it, into a hallway lined with lockers.

"Who are you?" Jared demanded. "What do you want?"

Not-Jared turned to face him, and something in its eyes made Jared go cold all over. "Don't you know me? Am I not your own self?" Its mouth curled into a sneer.

It was strange to watch it move and speak. It wasn't like watching Simon, with his tidy hair and the smear of toothpaste on his upper lip. And it wasn't quite himself either — the hair was messier, and the eyes were darker and...different. It took a step toward him.

Jared took a step back, wishing for any kind of faerie protection, and then he remembered the pocketknife in his jeans. Faeries hated iron, and steel was at least part iron. He opened one of the blades. "Why don't you all just leave us alone?"

The creature threw back its head and laughed. "You can never get away from your own self."

"Shut up! You're not me." Jared pointed the knife at his double.

"Put that toy away," Not-Jared said, its voice low and harsh.

"I don't know who you are, or who sent you, but bet I know what you're looking for," said Jared. "The Guide. Well, you're never going to get it."

The creature's grin widened into something that still wasn't really a smile. Then suddenly it shrank back as though frightened. Jared watched in amazement as the Not-Jared's body shrank, its dark hair paled into a sandy brown, and its now blue eyes went wide with terror.

Before Jared could fully comprehend what he was seeing, he heard a woman's voice behind him.

"What's going on here? Put that knife down."

The vice principal rushed up, grabbing Jared's wrist. The pocketknife clattered to the linoleum floor. Jared stared at the blade as the sandy-haired boy ran off down the hall, his sobs sounding a lot like laughter.

"I can't believe you brought your knife to school," Simon whispered to Jared as they sat together outside the vice principal's office.

Jared shot him a look. He had explained several times — even once to the police — that he was only showing the kid the knife, but they'd never found the other boy to confirm the story. Then the vice principal had asked Jared to wait outside. Their mother had been in the vice principal's office a long time, but Jared couldn't hear what was going on.

"What kind of faerie do you think that thing was?" Simon asked.

Jared shrugged. "I wish we had the book so I could look it up."

"You don't remember anything that could shape-shift like that?"

"I don't know." Jared rubbed his face.

"Look, I told Mom it wasn't your fault. You'll just have to explain."

Jared gave a short laugh. "Yeah, like I can tell her what happened."

"I could say that kid stole something from Mallory's bag." When Jared didn't respond, Simon tried again. "I could pretend I did it. We could switch shirts and everything."

Jared just shook his head.

Finally their mother emerged from the vice principal's office. She looked tired.

"I'm sorry," Jared said.

He was surprised by the calm tone of her voice. "I don't want to talk about it, Jared. Get your sister and let's just go."

Jared nodded and followed Simon, looking back just in time to see their mother sink down in the chair he'd vacated. What was she thinking? Why wasn't she yelling? He found himself wishing that she was mad — at least that he would understand. Her quiet sadness was more frightening. It was like this was all she expected of him.

Simon and Jared walked through the school, stopping to ask fencing team members if they'd seen Mallory. None of them had. They even stopped Chris-the-captain. He looked uncomfortable when they asked about Mallory, but he shook his head. The gymnasium was empty, the only sounds the echo of their steps on the glossy wood floor. The black mat had been rolled up, and everything from the meet had been put away.

Finally a girl with long, brown hair told them she'd seen Mallory crying in the girls' bathroom.

Simon shook his head. "Mallory? Crying? But she won."

The girl shrugged. "I asked her if she was okay, but she said she was fine."

"You think that was really her?" Simon asked as they walked toward the restroom.

"You mean, was something impersonating her? Why would a faerie turn into Mallory and then cry in a girls' bathroom?"

"I don't know," said Simon. "I'd cry if I had to turn into Mallory."

Jared snorted. "So, you want to go in there and look for her?"

"I'm not going into the girls' room," Simon said. "Besides, you're already in so much trouble, there's no way you can get into more."

"I can always get into more trouble," Jared said with a sigh. He pushed open the door. It looked surprisingly like the boys' room, except there were no urinals.

"Mallory?" he called. No answer. He peered under the stalls but didn't see any feet. He pushed open one of the doors gingerly. Even though there was no one in there, he felt weird, jumpy and embarrassed. After a moment he darted back out into the hall.

"She's not in there?" Simon said.

"It's empty." Jared glanced past the line of lockers, hoping no one had seen him.

"Maybe she went to the office looking for us," Simon said. "I don't see her anywhere."

A feeling of dread uncoiled in the pit of Jared's stomach. After the vice principal had caught him, he hadn't really thought about anything but how much trouble he was in. But that thing was still running around the school. He remembered how the creature had looked through Mallory's bag at the match.

"What if she went outside?" Jared said, hoping that they could still find her before it did. "She could have gone out to see if we were waiting by the car."

"We could look." Simon shrugged. Jared could tell he wasn't convinced, but they walked outside anyway.

The sky had already deepened to purples and golds. In the dimming light they walked past the track and the baseball field.

"I don't see her," Simon said.

Jared nodded. His stomach churned with nervousness. Where is she? he wondered.

"Hey," Simon said. "What's that?" He walked a few feet and leaned down to pick up something shining in the grass.

"Mallory's fencing medal," Jared said. "And look."

On the grass large chunks of rock formed a circle around the medal. Jared knelt down beside the largest stone. Engraved deeply in the rock was a word: TRADE.

"Stones," Simon said. "Like from the quarry."

Jared looked up, surprised. "Remember the map we found? It said dwarves live in the quarry — but I don't think dwarves can shape-shift."

"Mallory could still be inside with Mom. She could be in the office waiting for us."

Jared wanted to believe it. "Then why is her medal out here?"

"Maybe she dropped it. Maybe this is a trap." Simon started walking back toward the school. "Come on," he said. "Let's go back and see if she's with Mom."

Jared nodded numbly.

When they got back inside, they found their mother in the school entrance, talking into her cell phone. Her back was to them, and she was alone.

Although their mother was speaking softly, her voice traveled easily to where they crouched. "Yeah, I thought things were getting better too. But, you know, Jared never admitted to what happened when we first moved here...and well, this is going to sound strange, but Mallory and Simon are so protective of him."

Jared froze, both dreading what she was going to say and unable to make himself do anything to stop her from continuing.

"No, no. They deny he ever did any of those things. And they're keeping something from me. I can tell by the way they stop talking when they come into a room, the way they cover for one another, especially for Jared. You should have heard Simon tonight, making up excuses for his brother pulling a knife on that little boy." Here she made a choked noise and began crying.

"I just don't know if I can handle him anymore. He is so angry, Richard. Maybe he should go and stay with you for a while."

Dad. She was talking to their dad.

Simon jabbed Jared in the arm. "Come on. Mallory's not here."

Jared turned dazedly and followed his brother out the door. He could not have said how he felt at that moment — except maybe hollow.

Copyright © 2004 by Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black

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Table of Contents

Contents

List of Full-Page Illustrations

Letter from Holly Black

Letter from the Grace Kids

Map of the Spiderwick Estate

Chapter One: IN WHICH

There Is Both a Fight and a Duel

Chapter Two: IN WHICH

the Grace Twins Are Triplets

Chapter Three: IN WHICH

Simon Solves a Riddle

Chapter Four: IN WHICH

the Twins Discover a Tree Unlike Any Other

Chapter Five: IN WHICH

Jared and Simon Wake Sleeping Beauty

Chapter Six: IN WHICH

the Stones Speak

Chapter Seven: IN WHICH

There Is an Unexpected Betrayal

About Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 40 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(25)

4 Star

(10)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(0)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 40 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 8, 2008

    Ironwood tree

    It was ok. I have never read any of these books but they were ok.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 3, 2008

    it's A very good chapter book.

    The Spiderwick Chronicles IV is one of my favorite books. The story is about Mallory, Simon, and Jared Grace. One day Mallory was at fencing practice when she won. But goes in locker room and Jared saw double of himself the then his double turn into dust then Jared fines out that Mulgarath is looking for the field guide and then A army of ogre are coming to try get the guide will Jared stop Mulgarath

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 29, 2008

    The most wonderful book!!!

    This is a perfect book! As soon as I opend it I fell into a world of magic, goblins, hobgoblins,griffins Ect.Ect.Ect!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2008

    these books are awesome

    This series rules,i love it is so full of adventure,and it feels like as it were really happening

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 5, 2011

    Best Book Out of the Series

    I was totaly obsessed with these books about three years ago. This book was my absolute favorite out of anything and it's still my favorite out of the series. I was very sad when they cut this out of the movie and vowed never to see another movie on a book I really like, minus Harry Potter, again. I think that this book is absolutly amazing, I would highly recomend it, but read the series first, ofcource.

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  • Posted June 21, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    My Daughter loves this series

    There is great attention to detail and the characters are well defined. Jared really gets into a lot of trouble in this book. There is something that can change forms to look like anybody it wants too. My daughter loves the adventures these kids have with the goblins, trolls, and the entire make-believe world. I love the pictures in the book. They are very detailed and help young readers see what is happening and how the creatures look. I like the map in the beginning of each book. My daughter looks to see where the characters are when they move locations. It is a very captivating series.

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  • Posted March 2, 2010

    It was okay.

    When I read the book, it was sort of like Star Wars, but in a different world. The characters were fictional, which makes stories better in my opinion. For instance, I think there were a couple of trolls in the story. I was in the 6th grade, I can't remember much of it. I just remember the book being okay.

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  • Posted December 2, 2008

    I Also Recommend:

    sixth grade review

    The main character in the Spiderwick Chronicles is Simon. Simon is the one that found Arthur¿s field guide. When Simon found the field guide some strange events happened. The only bad part is when he opened the book he let out very suspicious monsters.<BR/><BR/> The plot of this story is that Simon, Jared, and Mallory need to defeat the bad guys which are goblins. They use the field guide to help them through the journey. Sometimes Thimbultack can play tricks on them and he could almost lose the book. The only solution to the story is that they use the book wisely.<BR/><BR/> The setting of the story is in a town and the time is modern day. Some other places are in the forest. The area they are in the most is in the city at home. The theme of the story is that you don¿t trust everyone you see.<BR/><BR/> I like the Spiderwick Chronicles because it is very entertaining. It has billions of superb word choices. Have some awesome creatures like the goblins. The best one is that it has only a few pictures so you know what the character looks like.<BR/><BR/> <BR/><BR/><BR/> Some connections to the story are that some strange things have happened in my life like having a dream with fake monsters like aliens and other strange objects. Another connection is that I play a sport just like Mallory does, but my sport isn¿t fencing, but mine is hockey. When I play hockey I wear a suit just like Mallory. I have a twin and that is my brother, but Mallory has a twin but it is not a real human it is a shape shifter.<BR/><BR/> Some names of other books I have read are the #1 book which is the Field Guide. The #2 book is the Seeing Stone. The #3 book is Lucinda¿s Secret but those aren¿t all there are many other books out there I can¿t name because there are that many. All three books are related because they have the same characters and the same authors. The other reasons are they have the same setting and the same plot.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 20, 2008

    a reviewer

    i've got this book and it's brilliant. in fact i want to read the rest of the booksmade by the author. it's a great adventure book about young jered grace who finds a book tha tells him all about trolls'bronies'etc'etc.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2007

    Fantastic

    It's so cool. My favorite part is when they think mallory is sleeping beauty. I think this should be ages 7 - 13. You will love it. Read the series you'll love it. Find it at the library.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 7, 2007

    Fantastic

    It's amazing. I think it should be all ages because of it's great talant. I read it all the time and it's so cool because of the goblins. My favorite is when they thought mallory was sleeping beauty and it was so funny. I think the parents would love it so much they would alays buy it for there children

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 22, 2006

    The best book ever.

    This book had my kid`s book report going on forever. I even read it to see what it was about. I was amazed at this fantastical adventure for Mallory, Jared, and Simon Grace.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 24, 2006

    Heartstopping to the very last page!

    Tony DiTerlizzi ans Holly Black make yet another outstanding book to add to the series. A mindracing tale that overcomes those who read it. Enjoyable and suspenceful! This book deserves 5 stars and is so tempting your head will race with excitment! Tony and Holly have done it again! In the begining of the book Mallory is fencing at her school and Jared see's a mysterious person rummaging through Mallory's fencing bag. Who is this person? read the book to find out!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2005

    Pretty Good

    The Spiderwick books are pretty good, and The Ironwood Tree was typical. Not bad, but not really all that great either. I liked Harry Potter, Charlie Bone, King Fortis and Artemis Fowl all better, but this was good too I guess.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 14, 2005

    THE BEST BOOK OUT OF FOUR!

    Yesterday I finshed 'The Ironwood Tree', the fourth book in the Spiderwick Chronicles series. It is my favorite so far. The beginning was a bit slow and much like the second book with the theme of a kidnapped sibling. The first time I read it I didn't finish it but the second time I thoroughly enjoyed it as part of a group read-a-loud session. I'm glad I read it again. It's very good!I don't especially like the characters,but the plot,the ideas and setting are interesting. For stories that have characters that are well developed and lovable or that you love to hate try the 'Harry Potter ' series and the 'Septimus Heap' series.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 28, 2004

    Amazing

    Great book that my mom and sister enjoy to read. My sister and me always want to know what is coming up. This book let's us stay up past are bedtime because of its great parts.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 28, 2004

    Wow!

    I love the Spiderwick books and if you like the other ones this one will not make you mad. If you like the rest you will love this one!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 14, 2004

    Contented

    This book is good. It does not have a lot of actions but the drawings are cool and its somewhat intresting.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2004

    GREAT BOOK

    THIS BOOK IS REALLY SOMETHING TO READ! IT'S ENCOURAGING AND INVITING AND INTERETING FOR A CHILD.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 19, 2004

    I LOVED IT!!!!!!!!!!!!

    The Ironwood Tree is the best Spiderwick book so far! From the fencing tournament to the surprise at the end. It is great! I couldn't put the book down!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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