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Literature / The Sisters Grimm

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L to R: Puck, Daphne, Sabrina

The Sisters Grimm is a series of fantasy mystery books by Michael Buckley.

The main protagonist, Sabrina Grimm, and her eight-year-old sister, Daphne Grimm, are related to The Brothers Grimm. You know, the guys who made all of those fairy tales. To make a long story short, the girls' parents disappear mysteriously. The girls skip around foster homes, which ensures the fact that Sabrina will be The Snark Knight. They go to live with a grandmother they didn't know they had. Sabrina meets the bane of her existence in the form of Puck, a four-thousand-year-old fairy prince turned king. They have to defeat the Ultimate Evil by solving a series of mysteries that eventually lead up to a war with the Scarlet Hand, an evil group of Everafters.

Almost always, Sabrina, Puck, and Daphne save the day, with the protagonist Sabrina solving most of the mysteries, by coincidence or logical reasoning.


They're basically about one big old Fractured Fairy Tale based around crimes that happen in the small town of Ferryport Landing. Ferryport Landing is your everyday, run-of-the-mill town where nothing is what it seems and fairytale creatures, called Everafters, roam the streets. Sometimes, mass destruction follows them, and somehow, none of the humans notice the strange magical happenings, although this can be attributed to the forgetful dust, which makes humans forget what happened. The series ran for nine books released over a eight-year span, with the Grand Finale being released in 2012.

All the books, in order, are:

  1. The Fairytale Detectives
  2. The Unusual Suspects
  3. The Problem Child
  4. Once Upon a Crime
  5. Magic and Other Misdemeanors
  6. Tales from the Hood
  7. The Everafter War
  8. The Inside Story
  9. The Council of Mirrors

Tropes and other misdemeanors:

  • Academy of Adventure: In book two, Sabrina, Daphne, and Puck are enrolled in Ferryport Landing Elementary. The children were practically zombie slaves, the teachers were evil, the school's guidance councilor tried to kill everybody, and the principal turned out to be the Pied Piper and was controlling the human students.
  • Accidental Misnaming: Puck and Mayor Charming have a problem with names. Ms. Smirt never refers to the sisters by their proper names.
  • Action Girl: Nearly all the women in the book.
  • Aerith and Bob: Baba Yaga and Jacob Grimm is just one example.
  • The Alleged Car: The Grimm family's beat up old car is so loud, you cannot have a single conversation inside it.
    "Are we close to Faerie yet?"
    "Oh, I love chili, but I'm afraid it doesn't love me," Granny shouted back.
    "No, not chili! Faerie!" Sabrina cried. "Are we getting closer?"
    "Why no, I've never kissed a monkey. What a weird question."
  • All Part of the Show: When the Jabberwocky breaks into the school.
  • Animorphism: Puck, definitely Puck.
  • Artifact of Death: The Vorpal Blade and any other magical item.
  • Ax-Crazy: Little Red Riding Hood, anybody?
  • Aw, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: Very frequently between Sabrina and Puck.
    • The two of them having that conversation after Oberon's funeral.
    • Puck pulling a Deus ex Machina and saving Sabrina from falling to her death in Once Upon A Crime.
  • Babies Ever After: Eventually, Puck and Sabrina get married and have two daughters.
  • Badass Creed: "We are the Grimms. This is what we do."
  • Badass Family: The Grimms all fight crimes, sometimes against creatures that could possibly eat them. Definitely badass.
  • Bad Future: Yes it was. Fortunately, the heroes were able to change it.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Puck and Sabrina, inasmuch as a couple of twelve year olds can have. They eventually get married.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Daphne.
  • Big Bad Friend: Mirror was the Master all along.
  • The Big Bad Wolf: Obviously. Except it's actually the spirit of ferocity removed from an ordinary wolf using the North Wind, which can enter people and transform them into the Wolf.
  • Big Damn Heroes / The Cavalry: Puck has his moments, although he always tries to pass it off as a Villainous Rescue. So does Prince Charming.
  • Big Eater: Daphne and Puck are said to have bottomless stomachs. The only way to wake Daphne up is to tell her breakfast is ready.
  • Bloodless Carnage: The future.
  • Catch a Falling Star: Puck catches Sabrina at least a million times.
  • Come Out, Come Out, Wherever You Are: In The Queen of Hearts' house.
  • Creepy Child / Cute and Psycho: Red, at least until the North Wind blows the madness out of her.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: All nine books' exterior color schemes are red, blue, dark blue, green, purple, orange, black, light green, and light blue, respectively.
  • Cool Old Lady: Granny Relda's been everywhere in the world, even to Mount Everest. If that isn't cool, I don't know what is.


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