Razorbill. Aug. 2023. 208p. Tr $22.99. ISBN 9780593524299; pap. $13.99. ISBN 9780593524282.
Gr 5-9–For a brief period every year, the young witch Gwen gets to see her friends Miles (a vampire) and Sloane (a werewolf). Like other teens, they just like to hang out, and do the occasional haunting. This Halloween though, the boys from the Hallowlands give Gwen a grimoire and magical tools to aid the witch’s magical prowess. Delighted, she tries out new spells to further their fun, which lands them in the sights of Hiro. The young man is determined to prove the supernatural exists, and as he hounds them, the chaos, and punk aesthetic, ramps up. This graphic novel is a slice-of-life character piece with supernatural high jinks humor. Natural dialogue, everyday interactions, and expressive designs reveal much about each teen’s personality and motivations. Even the central conflict revolves around them, as it ultimately sprouts from Gwen and Hiro’s desire to prove themselves. By the end, a cease-fire, unanswered questions about witches, and the consequences of everybody’s actions linger, giving Lawton plenty of potential for more Hella-fun.
VERDICT With its punk paranormal style, easygoing dialogue, and story of belonging and friendship, many tweens and young teens will find this graphic novel a relatable read.

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