Ruby McCracken’s Guide to Christmas

Vronsky, Ruby's familiar, getting into the Christmas spiritHi guys, Ruby McCracken here. As I get ready to spend another Christmas in the Ordinary World, I thought I’d explain some of the weird Ord customs to help any visiting witches. (And if you haven’t already, you can read my more general Guide to the Ord World here!)

Christmas Decorations

Tarantula TreeOrds do have Christmas trees, and they’re ALMOST the same as the ones back home in Hexadonia. The big difference is that instead of a tarantula, they put a star on top. Who knew?

And they put up what they call Christmas stockings, only the ones here aren’t smelly. They don’t seem to know that it’s best to use gym socks that have been worn continuously for at least eight days.

They have mistletoe here, too, but instead of tweaking someone’s nose under it, you’re supposed to – actually, I can’t say it. It’s too gross.

Christmas Dinner

OK, Ord Christmas cake is actually disgusting. They don’t use dried gnats and chopped earthworms like you’re supposed to, they put in raisins and currants and… BLECH.

Pigs in blankets are delicious though. Those Ords can get SOMETHING right at least…

Christmas in Hexadonia

Jingle BatsYou know what? Writing this is making me homesick for Christmas in Hexadonia. It’s my fourth favourite holiday (after Halloween, Feline Familiar Liberation Day and The Western Hexadonian Archipelagic Independence Day).

I have so many happy memories of singing Christmas carols with my friends. My favourites are “The Holly and the Poison Ivy”, “Jingle Bats”, and “The 12 Spells of Christmas”.

On snowy days, we would go outside and build snow trolls until my parents would call us in for dinner. The meal would always begin with Christmas creakers – you have to listen carefully to hear the C-R-E-A-K-I-N-G sound they make when you pull them.

Well, I’ve got to run now, because my dad’s calling me. He wants me to be a guinea pig for one of the new hair sculptures he’s creating for the salon where he works. It’s a Christmas-themed one, but to be honest, I really don’t see how he’ll fit all eight reindeer on my head…

About the Book

Ruby McCracken: Tragic Without MagicRuby McCracken’s life is OVER. Her parents have forced her to move to the Ordinary World and that means – new home, new school and worst of all, no magic! Seriously?! A witch without magic? That’s LITERALLY tragic.

Ruby has to leave behind her broomstick (and walk everywhere – YUCK!) and her friends (no more watching Hex Factor together on a Saturday night). She’s absolutely STARVING with no snack spell, and there’s no way to get revenge on the mean girls at her boring new school without a good curse.

Despite her best witching efforts, the Ordinary World remains tragically magic-deprived, until Ruby receives a mysterious hext that seems to offer an answer. That is, if she can figure out what it means and, more importantly, who sent it.

Packed with great humour, loveable characters and witty banter, Ruby McCracken: Tragic Without Magic is perfect for fans of Witchworld and The Worst Witch.

Winner of the Kelpies Prize 2016. Find out about the all-new Kelpies Prize here!

Ruby McCracken’s Guide to the Ordinary World

Hi! I’m Ruby McCracken, and I’m a witch. Well, I was a witch, until my parents forced us to leave our home in the magical world of Hexadonia to come and live in the Ordinary World, with NO magic! It does mean I’m now something of an expert on blending in here, so I’ve written this guide for any other Hexadonians who might want to visit!

First Things First

Black cat

  • Magic doesn’t work in the Ord World. Not even the Snack Spell.
  • Don’t forget to convert your cash to Ord money. You’ll get some funny looks if you try to pay with bronze ingots.
  • Familiars react strangely to the Ord World. Be prepared for some minor shapeshifting…

Eating and Drinking

  • When going to a restaurant in the Ord World, ask WHAT’S on the menu, not WHO.
  • Ords eat eggs from chickens instead of spiders, and their milk comes from cows instead of bats!
  • Ords actually LIKE chocolate, and ice cream. Disgusting!
  • They don’t have sandwitches in the Ord World. They have something similar called sandwiches, but they have the filling on the inside, which just doesn’t make sense.


  • A Spelling Bee in the Ord World doesn’t actually involve any magic spells. Instead, they just have to say the letters of a word in the right order. So boring.
  • Don’t expect to find live snakes in any Ord World board games. Their version of Snakes and Ladders is just pictures on a board. This place is so incredibly dull.
  • Apparently, an orange head impaled on a stick is not an appropriate craft activity for Girl Guides.


Witch's hat

  • Ords have something called lipstick, which is like our lobestick but instead of putting it on their earlobes, they put it on – you guessed it – their lips. I mean – I can’t even…
  • Hats aren’t allowed in the classroom – unless you tell your teacher you have a highly infectious disease.
  • Ords actually try to prevent their teeth from rotting and falling out. They go to see someone called a “dentist” who makes their teeth white and clean. Urgh!

Making Friends with Ords

  • Flowers are thought to be a good thing. Ords actually like them, and give them to each other as gifts (and they heartlessly kill weeks, if you can believe it).
  • Loads of people in the Ord World are scared of really normal things like spiders, ghosts, vampires and even witches!
  • Instead of normal nicknames like “Slimeball”, people call you “Honey”. Which is weird because as we all know, honey is something criminals are forced to eat in prison.

I hope your visit to the Ord World is more fun, less permanent, and less dangerous than mine!

Oh, and if you wanted to bring me some treats from the Outdoor Insect Market back in Hexadonia, I’d be eternally grateful!

Find out about Ruby’s first adventure in the Ord World in Ruby McCracken: Tragic Without Magic by Elizabeth Ezra. The perfect spooky read for Halloween!