Eleven-year-old Mirka respects her family and its Jewish traditions. But she also dreams of fighting dragons—and obtaining a sword for her cause. Little does the heroine suspect that her observant stepmother, Fruma, is preparing Mirka in her own unexpectedly helpful way—coaching her in the merits of brain over brawn. “When [webcomics publisher] girlamatic.com called for girl-friendly comic ideas, I had already been thinking about how the traditional fairy tales are never about Jewish characters,” says Barry Deutsch. “Historically, Jews weren’t allowed to carry swords, making them unlikely dragon slayers. And of course, kids aren’t allowed to carry swords either. From there, it was a short step to a Jewish girl’s stubborn quest for a sword.” Deutsch says he spent years researching, writing and drawing Hereville, which he rendered entirely on computer, using a Cintiq tablet—which allows you to draw on screen as if on paper, making it almost as cool as a sword.
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Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword
Colors by Jake Richmond
Amulet/Abrams / November / 9780810984226 / $15.95 / ages 10-14