Anna Sophia tells an astounding story of her origins. The
man she affectionately calls Uncle Misha found her when he
was trapping sables for fur in Siberia. He says a spirit
inspired him to intrude into a bear's cave where he found a
tiny baby wrapped in furs. DIARY OF ANNA THE GIRL WITCH
takes up with Anna, aged thirteen, at a good school in
Geneva, Switzerland. She misses Uncle Misha and his
stories, and she has a good friend Gaelle.
Now she is thirteen, Anna is sure she is nearly grown-up.
But she hadn't expected to be able to make time stop
briefly, or to change a garden snake into a scarf. When a
wealthy family called the Montmorencys arrive, Anna isn't
delighted. Even though they promise her a hot air balloon
ride, and have helped orphans, she never really trusted
them. From the air she seems to see a dark shadow wrapped
around the nearby castle where the Montmorencys live. Is
seeing sinister omens part of witchcraft? Anna has no-one
she can ask for the school is run by kind nuns. Gaelle
isn't well, for no apparent reason.
An inheritance arrives which includes some strange items -
one is a picture of a cottage built on stilts, but the
stilts look like chicken legs. From my reading of Central
European fairytales I immediately recognised the
significance of this cottage. But I'll let the Young Adult
readers discover it for themselves. Let's just say that
Anna's quiet life immediately gets a lot stranger. A
sinister plot is afoot that may be beyond the power of even
a girl witch to undo.
There are wonderful line drawings with coloured sections
through the pages, by illustrator Raquel Barros who helps
to bring the story to life. After every few chapters we get
a page from the diary to recap the adventure, which is a
help if you are reading over a few days. A boy called Jean-
Sebastien is involved so there is plenty to interest boys
as well as girls, but DIARY OF ANNA THE GIRL WITCH is a
title sure to appeal to girls. I think anyone from ten to
mid-teens will have a good time with this sometimes scary
adventure. Max Candee says that he creates stories for the
perfect audience, his three children, and only publishes
the ones they really enjoy. He has written stories for pre-
teens and hopes his series 'Anna The Girl Witch' will find
a lot of friends. I expect it will!
What do you do when you discover you’re a witch — and
that this destroys your soul?
Anna Sophia doesn’t know much about herself. Not what
happened to her parents. Not why she was found living with
wild bears in Siberia, and certainly not why an eccentric,
rich couple in Switzerland is trying so hard to adopt her.
She has always known she was different. She didn’t know
just how different until her 13th birthday, when she
discovered her supernatural powers, both delightful and a
little frightening. She also learned that these powers make
a dark cloud grow inside her soul, bit by tiny bit.
And now she’s in danger. Her friends, too. It’s so
tempting to use her magic to save them all, but would she
sacrifice her soul for that? She just doesn’t know.
Anna Sophia can ignite things. She can fly in a bucket
and stop time. And she has some serious choices to make.