If your middle-grade is looking for the perfect cozy graphic novel for fall, you should check out Aster and the Accidental Magic by Thom Pico. Pico’s English translation was published in 2020 and the second book in the series, Aster and the Mixed Up Magic came out last year. The series is illustrated by Karensac and her art has a lovely whimsical feel to it. You are bound to fall in love with not only the art style, but Aster too!
Aster’s family moves from the city to a tiny town in the middle of nowhere in a valley for her mother’s job. Her mother’s focus is on a dying species of birds that wreak havoc during a great migration that occurs every year. The entire town is forced to shut down and everyone is supposed to stay indoors. With her parents distracted by the upcoming great migration and her brother gone on a trip for two weeks, Aster is left alone and is bored out of her mind. What is she even supposed to do in the middle of nowhere with no friends to turn to?
When Aster is forced to spend time outside, she starts to encounter strange characters: an old shepherdess, a trickster spirit, and an angry fox. The trickster spirit she encounters grants her three wishes that do not go as planned and she becomes responsible for trying to keep the seasons in balance with her newfound magical powers. Her journey to regain balance within the four seasons has twists and turns, and moments that’ll leave you wanting more adventure!
Written by Mallory Jones
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