London, Christmas Eve, 1911.The world is changing fast: giant warships, aeroplanes with bombs, spies and assassins, fear of war with Germany. The cosy lives of Sophie and Samuel Keeler and their famous stage magician father Edmund Keeler are about to be torn apart by secrets, espionage and monstrous creatures from the shadows. Trapped in their stuffy Edwardian childhoods, the Keeler siblings pine for adventure. Sophie (14) dreams of being Britain's first woman detective while Samuel (15) would love to be a pilot, the newest kind of hero. They both envy their eccentric uncle Alfred, a brilliant and notorious Sherlock Holmes-like paranormal detective who uses his brilliant deductive powers and esoteric equipment to solve mysteries from the world of spirits and mythical beasts. When their uncle's performance of a Christmas Eve shadow-puppet play of Little Red Riding Hood unexpectedly releases the hungry spectre of the Shadow Wolf, Sophie and Samuel will get more adventure than they ever bargained for. But Shadow Wolf proves to be only the first mystery in a conspiracy that threatens to destroy the Keeler family, as Sophie and Samuel witness their parents, Edmund and Alice, vanish for real in the middle of their latest spectacular magic act. So they turn to their eccentric uncle to keep them safe and solve the mystery of their parents' disappearance. From the Royal Naval dockyards of Plymouth to the bone-stacked catacombs of Paris, Uncle Alfred and his two apprentice detectives, Samuel and Sophie, confront eerie creatures and blood-chilling danger as they are chased by a ruthless spy-ring determined to harness the dark forces of Magick as weapons of war. As Sophie struggles with her refusal to believe in shadow-wolves and ghosts and her brother Samuel takes terrible risks to impress their eccentric uncle, the Keeler children find moments of great courage and inspired cleverness, as they try to solve the mysteries in Uncle Alfred's casebook with plenty of clues and spine-tingling intrigue along the way.