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Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword: 12/02/12
Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword by Barry Deutsch is a graphic novel that features another strong female lead in the role of the unlikely but willing hero. Of all the recent books, I've read, Mirka reminds me most of September from The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making.
Mirka lives in an Orthodox Jewish community. She wants to learn sword fighting but is stuck learning knitting instead. Just like September and her mother's wrench, she learns how to wield the weaponry she is given. Here, the threat is a troll and the battle takes place in the nearby forest, rather than far away fairyland. The need for wits and unusual weaponry, though, is the same.
The artwork is done in a sepia scheme with strong lines. Stylistically it's somewhere between Hope Larson and Marjane Satrapi.
The one distraction, for me, were all the asides explaining either Jewish culture or the Yiddish and Hebrew words being used by the characters. A simple glossary or appendix for those who need it would have sufficed.
Recommended by everead