It begins in the most boring place in the world: Chickentown, U.S.A. There lives Candy Quackenbush, her heart bursting for some clue as to what her future might hold. When the answer comes, it's not one she expects. Out of nowhere comes a wave, and Candy, led by a man called John Mischief (whose brothers live on the horns on his head), leaps into the surging waters and is carried away.
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Candy Quackenbush's adventures in the amazing world of the Abarat are getting more strange by the hour. Christopher Carrion, the Lord of Midnight, has sent his henchman to capture her. "Why?" she wonders. What would Carrion want with a girl from Minnesota? And why is Candy beginning to feel that the world of Abarat is familiar to her? Why can she speak words of magic she doesn't even remember learning?
"I know that many of you here have waited years for this Hour," Mater Motley said, using that voice that, though it was barely conversational in volume, was somehow heard everywhere. "The waiting is over. Tomorrow there will be no dawn. Only midnight, absolute and eternal." And so begins a new chapter in the epic story of 16-year-old Candy Quackenbush and her journeys through the world of the Abarat, where every hour is an island in one eternal day, and nothing is as it seems.