By Jake Wyatt & Choo. Published by First Second.
Softcover, 176 pages, Colour, 2022
A fantasy graphic novel about Lizzy, a girl who gets cursed by a wishing well, and her adventure to grant three wishes in order to break free.
Li-Zhen’s life on the archipelago is simple. Known to friends and family as Lizzy, she takes care of her grandfather and their goats, she flirts with the woman who helps row the ferry, and she stays away from the fog that comes in the night—and the monsters hiding within it.
But Lizzy’s life comes apart when she steals a handful of coins from a sacred well to cover a debt. The well requires repayment, but it doesn’t deal in coins. It needs wishes, and its minions will drown Lizzy in its depths if she doesn’t grant them. Lizzy finds herself on a quest to uncover hidden memories, bestow great wealth, and face the magical secrets that nearly destroyed her family—and are now returning to threaten everything she has ever known.
In this breathtaking graphic novel, Jake Wyatt and Choo have created a modern fable based on magic and family secrets, exploring the power—and limits—of wishes.
Wyatt and Choo’s gorgeously illustrated adventure follows a classic three-quest fairy tale structure, but the matter-of-fact queer representation and lush, manga-inspired artwork set it apart... With captivating artwork and a compelling adventure that has surprising depth, this is a top pick for teen readers who liked Tillie Walden’s On a Sunbeam. —Booklist, starred review
There’s a timelessness to this story as the weight of family secrets, the desire to change a life through wishes, and the magic of tapping one’s own strengths are themes that echo backward and forward across humanity. —The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, starred review
A quick, immersive, and gorgeous read that’s welcome on any graphic novel shelf. —School Library Journal, starred review
Wyatt enlivens classic fantasy tropes and themes through the lens of a tenacious heroine whose rapidly expanding worldview and patchy memories of her complicated past build toward a poignant resolution through a compact, immersive narrative. —Publisher's Weekly, starred review
Choo’s manga-influenced cartooning is cinematic and immersive, expertly balancing long-distance establishing shots with up-close character-driven action.—Horn Books