A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that there's a bit of violence at the end, but otherwise this is pretty mild, milder than the original Spiderwick series, and not too scary or suspenseful.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
With his mother dead, Nick is none too happy when his father remarries and he has to give up his bedroom to his new stepsister, Laurie. He's even less happy to find that she's a weirdo who believes in the fairies and the unseen magical world she has read about in The Spiderwick Chronicles. But he's really unhappy to discover that she's right.
Is it any good?
This doesn't have the freshness and exciting suspense of the original series, and Nick and Laurie are rather unlikable protagonists. It does have one bit that long-time fans will enjoy, though: an appearance in the story by the author, illustrator, and the twins on whom the series is supposedly based. Nick and Laurie go to see them at a book signing, hoping for some advice in dealing with a problem with a giant, and are vastly disappointed. The author has fun razzing herself and her partner, and it provides a little metafiction interlude that jazzes the proceedings up for a while. But in the next book the basic story will have to pick up considerably, and Nick and Laurie will have to become a whole lot more appealing, to hold onto fans of the original series.
This is the beginning of a new series spun off The Spiderwick Chronicles. The characters are new, the setting changed to Florida, but the concept is the same: we are surrounded by an unseen, mostly malevolent, world of magical creatures, and certain magical items (here a four-leaf clover and the water a nixie has swum in) can give one the Sight to see it.