Crystal and her little brother Cole live on a chicken farm in the small town of Goshen Falls. They constantly get stuck taking care of the chickens, which they hate because chickens are disgusting. There's also this odd woman in town, Vanessa, who everyone thinks is a witch. A bunch of kids try to fill her mailbox with water, and she notices Crystal and Cole before everyone runs away.
They're walking around with Cole's friend Anthony one day, and Cole and Anthony are acting like typical annoying kids. They accidentally run into Vanessa, knocking her down and ruining a bunch of her groceries. Anthony apologizes before running away, and she points at the two of them and says, "chicken, chicken."
Crystal accidentally slams her hand in the refrigerator door and thinks it was Vanessa. Cole thinks it's so funny that he comes downstairs the next day with red sores all over his face and says that Vanessa did it, but he really just drew on his face with a marker. Later that day at chorus practice, Cole starts clucking like a chicken when it comes his time to sing.
He can't stop clucking and he shows his sister the feathers sprouting up all over his body. Thinking that it's another trick, she starts tugging on the feathers, but they are all attached to his body. She ends up plucking him, but the feathers grow back the next day, and she has feathers all over her too.
Crystal has problems of her own. While at her friend's birthday party, she notices that her lips feel weird when she sings. Every time she tries to talk, she clucks or makes chicken noises. She rushes into the bathroom and finds that her lips are now growing into beaks. She tries to talk to her mom, but she just tells her to put some lotion on her chapped lips.
To make matters worse, their parents are throwing a big barbecue and don't want to listen to them complain. Cole starts eating seeds off the ground like a real chicken, and his mom flips out. Then, Crystal starts running like a chicken when playing basketball. They decide that the only thing they can do is break into Vanessa's house and find her spell book.
Crystal finds a book called "Chicken, Chicken, Chicken" and they run home, but it's just a cookbook. They go back to the house, find another book, and Crystal recites a spell from the book. It turns them into chicks, and Vanessa's cat starts playing with them. Vanessa finally shows up and lets them know that she won't turn them back because they are insolent and rude kids.
Crystal makes her way to Vanessa's typewriter and apologizes, but she says that it's too late and rants some more about rude children. Crystal thanks her, and Vanessa gets misty eyed because she never got a thank you note from a child before. She turns them back into humans and gives them both a soda. Cole finishes his and burps loudly. When Crystal starts laughing, Vanessa points at them both and whispers, "pig, pig."
*Let me get this straight. Their parents decided to move from the city to the country because they always dreamed of running a farm. So, they keep chickens and make their kids take care of them?
*Their mom is pretty terrible too. When they run to her to show them the feathers literally growing out of their bodies, she won't even look up from her cooking.
*I would love to read one of these books where the parents not only care but actually try to help their children.
*They go to see Anthony and nothing weird happened to him. Crystal later realizes that Vanessa didn't cast a spell on him because he apologized for running into her.
*Why would the apology matter? Vanessa saw him at her house when they were doing the mailbox prank, so she knows he isn't a nice kid.
*What the heck does chicken have to do with anything? If I could turn rude kids into some random animal, I definitely wouldn't pick a chicken.