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Adventure on Whalebone Island by M.A. Wilson
Black Hammer Volume 2: The Event by Jeff Lemire
The Dark Lady by Irene Adler
A Darkness Absolute by Kelley Armstrong
Ghostbusters 101: Everyone Answers the Call by Erik Burnham and Dan Schoening
Habibi by Craig Thompson
If You Find This by Matthew Baker
Juana and Lucas by Juana Medina
Koko Be Good by Jen Wang
The League of Beastly Dreadfuls by Holly Grant
Locke & Key, Volume 2: Head Games by Joe Hill
Love, Hate & Other Filters by Samira Ahmed
The Magician's Secret by Carolyn Keene
Not the Killing Type by Lorna Barrett
Now That You Mention It by Kristan Higgins
Otis and the Scarecrow by Loren Long
Patina by Jason Reynolds
Pierre the Maze Detective: The Search for the Stolen Maze Stone by Hiro Kamigaki
A Pug's Tale by Alison Pace
The Refrigerator Monologues by Catherynne M. Valente
Sabotage at Willow Woods by Carolyn Keene
Smashie McPerter and the Mystery of Room 11 by N. Griffin
Speedy in Oz by Ruth Plumly Thompson
Sunflower House by Eve Bunting
Teddy Mars: Almost a World Record Breaker by Molly B. Burnham
The Terrible Two Go Wild by Mac Barnett, Jory John, and Kevin Cornell
Things Too Huge to Fix by Saying Sorry by Susan Vaught
Waiting for Unicorns by Beth Hautala
The War at Ellsmere by Faith Erin Hicks
Welcome to the Real World by Angela Melick
Winterhouse by Ben Guterson

Miscellaneous
December 2017 Sources
December 2017 Summary
Five stars in 2017
It's Monday, What Are You Reading (January 01)
It's Monday, What Are You Reading (January 08)
It's Monday, What Are You Reading (January 15)
It's Monday, What Are You Reading (January 22)
It's Monday, What Are You Reading (January 29)

Road Essays
The transformative power of the cornfield: magic in the Marvelous Land of Oz

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5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
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3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish


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The War at Ellsmere: 01/23/18

cover art

The War at Ellsmere by Faith Erin Hicks is set at a remote all girls boarding school. Juniper is the newest student — and a scholarship one at that. The popular girl has decided to do whatever it takes to get her expelled. Meanwhile, she's been roomed with Cassie, aka "the orphan" who probably could buy the entire school if she wanted to.

Because of its remoteness and the very obvious fish out of water plot, at first glance War at Ellsmere is like any number of magical girl manga (when they're set at a school). A recent anime equivalent would be Märchen Mädchen (2018). Looking just at the social dynamic of the bully and the main character, Hick's graphic novel pairs nicely with Dear Poppy by Ronni Arno (2017).

But there is also a magical element to this book. The school isn't as magical as Hogwarts but it does have an enchanted forest — one similar to the woods of Nagspeake. There's really nothing else to say without giving away plot points. Go spend an afternoon at Ellsmere.

Five stars

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