Ohhh I am excited to share this find with you all today. Recently, I visited St. Louis to see my best friend. So of course I requested that we visit some local bookstores. We only made it to one but Left Bank Books was a great choice. Reminiscent of traditional bookstores you are bound to find something that piques your interest there. I love books. The look, the smell, the knowing that I am going to be transported to another world or learn something new is a feeling that I am always chasing.
I wondered through the shop knowing that I was in for a treat. As I moved through the children’s section a staff recommendation caught my eye. It was The Witch Boy by Molly Ostertag. Now of course a book about witchcraft always makes it past the first glance. Then I read over the synopsis I was intrigued. The Witch Boy tells the tale of Aster a 13 year old boy who lives in a magical community where boys are shapeshifter’s and girls learn magic to become witches. Aster has an affinity for witchcraft though and spends his time not so secretly learning spells. As a threat begins to grow against his community, Aster’s conflict between what he knows to be true for him and what is expected of him grows. Accompanied by his non-magical friend Charlie, a girl who is figuring out her own place in her community, Aster realizes that his truth may be the key to overcoming the danger that his family faces.
This graphic novel was AMAZING! It was a quick read as an adult but I could see younger folks pouring over the images and the story for hours. The illustrations are vibrant, fun, and diverse. You’ll find that you are able to identify with various characters not only through their behaviors and personalities but also physically. As we realize the importance of representation I love how normalized difference is in this work. Different types of people, families, gender, and spirituality are not highlighted- they just are.
I would definitely recommend this graphic novel to anyone who is looking for a witchy fun read for themselves or their children.
Let me know what you think of the work when you check it out!