Nearly nine-year-old Caroline isn't at all sure visiting her Dad, and his new wife and annoying stepson, is a good idea. She's even less convinced when Dad has to give a final exam, her stepmother is called away, and Hector's left in charge on her first day there!
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Marriage counselor Nancy Werlock didn't want to take over the family business. Unfortunately for her fate, and a bunch of conniving but well-meaning spirits, have other plans. Now Nancy finds herself fumbling through exorcisms and sorting applications for a new apprentice. Because for Werlock women, the family business is demonology. And at…
Hector warns the college student who drops off a late art project that Dad won't accept it. The student tells him to mind his own business and "just leave it alone till your dad gets home." Who does he think he is? Caroline can't do any harm by taking the cover off one corner and looking. The picture shows a mountain covered with twisting paths and a variety of fantastic creatures - including a mermaid. Caroline loves mermaids!
And she can hear this one singing!
Leaning closer to hear better, Caroline tumbles headlong into the picture. But mermaids aren't as nice in person as in theory. When Hector jumps in to rescue her, he is at best half-successful. They're trapped on a mountain full of brightly-colored threats, confusing paths, and monsters variously smart and stupid, treacherous and fair-minded, but all - from the courteous sphinx to the crabby Thigama Bob - set on keeping them from getting out alive. Hector is stronger and knows more about monsters than Caroline does; but Caroline is bolder and quicker-witted than Hector.
And they'd better stick together, because the odds of either of them making it through alone are slim.