Every year, the people of the Protectorate leave a baby as an offering to the witch who lives in the forest. They hope this sacrifice will keep her from terrorizing their town. But the witch in the Forest is a good witch. She rescues the children and delivers them to families on the other side of the forest.
Jaz has found the best way to make friends with new girl Nadima, who doesn't speak any English - by offering her a chocolate bar. Nadima grins and offers back some Turkish Delight, the ice is broken, and a special friendship begins.
MAGICAL MACHINES, WIZARDS, WITCHES, MYSTERIOUS UNDERWORLDS, A RACE AGAINST TIME - AND TWO MOST MAGICAL GIRLS.
ANNABEL GREY HAS BEEN BROUGHT UP TO BE A VERY PROPER VICTORIAN YOUNG LADY. BUT BEING 'PROPER' ISN'T ALWAYS EASY - ESPECIALLY WHEN YOU CAN SOMETIMES SEE MARVELLOUS (AS WELL AS TERRIFYING) THINGS IN PUDDLES. BUT PARLOUR TRICKS SUCH AS THESE ARE NOTHING COMPARED TO THE WORLD THAT ANNABEL IS ABOUT TO ENTER...
AFTER THE RATHER SUDDEN DEPARTURE OF HER MOTHER, ANNABEL IS SENT TO LIVE WITH HER AUNTS. THEY CLAIM TO BE SHOREDITCH WITCHES, AND FROM A VERY OLD FAMILY LINE OF THEM TOO. THEY'RE KEEN TO INTRODUCE ANNABEL TO THEIR WORLD OF TRANSFORMATION, POTIONS AND FLYING BROOMSTICKS (WHICH SEEM TO HAVE STRONG PERSONALITIES OF THEIR OWN) BUT ARE HORRIFIED WHEN ANNABEL ANNOUNCES NOT ONLY DOES SHE NOT KNOW ANY MAGIC, YOUNG LADIES SHOULDN'T BELIEVE IN SUCH THINGS. BUT BEFORE ANNABEL HAS TIME TO DECIDE WHETHER SHE DOES OR NOT, SHE IS SWEPT INTO AN URGENT QUEST.