When Mirror fails to escape the barrier using Granny Relda’s body, he turns to his plan B: killing all the Grimms so that the magical barrier collapses. In the meantime, Sabrina has gathered the other magic mirrors as advisors on how to deal with their mortal enemy. They tell her to join forces with the Scarlet Hand against Mirror, in exchange for offering all the citizens of Ferryport Landing their freedom.
The ninth and final book, The Council of Mirrors was a strong finish to a great series. Like usual, it's hard to look at a series critically until you've read it all. When they're spread apart, a year or more between books, some of the story elements that work really well as a whole come across as weak or disappointing. Take The Inside Story, book 8, for example. I didn't love it. Not because it wasn't a good element of the greater story arc, but because I'd waited a year for that book and then it left behind most of the cast and went on an adventure which branched off from the main story line. Yet now I've read The Council of Mirrors, and now that you can merrily pick up book 9 as soon as you've closed the pages on book 8, The Inside Story seems like it works much better than I had originally thought.
Buckley charmed me as usual with his characters, Puck, and Daphne, are funny and whimsical enough to keep the story upbeat even in its darker moments, and Sabrina's doubts and frustration anchor the drama. The three of them make such a great match you would think anyone else would be unnecessary, however The Sisters Grimm books have always been an ensemble cast and characters like Pinnochio, Prince Charming, Mayor Heart and Mr. Canis are all given their time to shine.
Although not as epic an end as say, Fablehaven, or Harry Potter, Buckley put together some excellent fight scenes and kept the tension high throughout. He takes it relatively easy on the death toll, but doesn't wimp out with one of those everyone-miraculously-survives-except-the-bad-guys end. But what I truly loved was the hysterical 13 years later, and 16 years after that, epilogues which were totally satisfying tie outs to characters I'd grown to love.
An excellent series I can't recommend highly enough, The Sisters Grimm is clever, funny and well worth your reading efforts.
The Council of Mirrors, by Michael Buckley
Published by Amulet Books, April 24th, 2012