‘I got into witchcraft when I was 54 years old and I haven’t looked back since…’
In the middle of Plum Woods lives Alcatoe, a mischievous little witch who prefers her own company and finds rules annoying. This brings her into quiet conflict with the meticulous and austere Goonwartha, Head of the Plumtown Witches’ Social Club, who is always on at Alcatoe to smarten up.
Every autumn, Plumtown hosts a vegetable pageant which Goonwartha runs like a military operation, but this year a surprise request has given Alcatoe a chance to mess things up. Three local children have demanded a spell to grow a prizewinning turnip, but once harvested the enormous vegetable turns out to be alive. Alcatoe has programmed it to run amok in the Special Attributes class, and everything is in place to cause maximum embarrassment until the children realise that the prizewinning vegetables will be cooked for the Harvest Feast, and decide to rescue the Turnip Child before it meets an untimely end. Mile-a-minute fun ensues!
Bursting with warm-hearted silliness and nostalgic pop-culture references, Isaac Lenkiewicz’s storyline will appeal to readers who enjoy imaginative pyrotechnics and are willing to follow its twists and turns. Panel sequences are punctuated by full-page spreads, which help the action to progress swiftly but in a visually and imaginatively expansive way, and Lenkiewicz’s eye-catching autumnal palette sits well with the macabre forest setting.
Alcatoe may be 54 years+, but she’s a small child at heart, and younger readers will recognize the way she chafes at authority while being thoroughly delighted by the unconstructive power that she wields. Lenkiewicz’s focus on stylish, child-centred fun will ensure a warm welcome wherever this book is shelved.