I received this book for free from Scholastic Press in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

{The Hidden Witch: Molly Ostertag}The Hidden Witch by Molly Ostertag
Series: The Witch Boy
Published by Graphix on October 30, 2018
Genres: Graphic Novels, Junior High, Middle School
Pages: 208
Format: Paperback
Source: Scholastic Press
Buy on Amazon
Goodreads



{Synopsis} – Aster and his family are adjusting to his unconventional talent for witchery; unlike the other boys in his family, he isn’t a shapeshifter. He’s taking classes with his grandmother and helping to keep an eye on his great-uncle whose corrupted magic wreaked havoc on the family.

Meanwhile, Aster’s friend from the non-magical part of town, Charlie, is having problems of her own — a curse has tried to attach itself to her. She runs to Aster and escapes it, but now the friends must find the source of the curse before more people — normal and magical alike — get hurt.

{My thoughts} – Aster and his family are finding a new normal with him studying witchery as opposed to shapeshifting and demon hunting. All of the girls are learning to accept that he is in their classes, however, some of his teachers are still not happy about the new accommodations that everyone is making for him.

It’s a new year and with a new year usually brings new students to the nearby schools. This seems to be the case for Charlie’s school and class. She has a new student in her class named Ariel. Ariel is a bit different from Charlie because she is so closed off and keeps to herself. She doesn’t like to let others in and has a lot of anger within herself for the way people have treated her in the past. She is a foster child, which makes things more difficult. She has no idea where her parents are, and she is very confused about herself and why everyone treats her so differently.

Charlie tries to become friends with her, but she forgets to call her after school and Ariel makes it a point to attack Charlie and not in a good human way. Ariel uses a form of dark magic. It takes awhile, but Aster and his grandmother figure out what kind of magic it is and they work to protect Charlie from getting hurt again in the future. It takes a long while before they figure out that Ariel is the cause of the dark magic.

Ariel has no idea that she is practicing dark magic and that she can not only hurt herself but those she attacks with it. She was never taught how to use her magic. Aster and his family decide that they are going to do what they can to help her before the dark magic consumes her.

All to often there are foster kids that get lost in the shuffle. Like Ariel many of them have anger issues. Many of them don’t know where they come from. They don’t know their actual family or their parents. They just know that they are different and they feel different. It takes children like Charlie and Aster to help them feel like they are wanted and like they belong when more often then not they are treated like outcasts due to situation and circumstance. I’m not saying all foster kids are treated poorly, I am just saying that it happens more then people might realize.

I recommend this book for children in the foster system. I also think that children that aren’t living with either parent could benefit from reading this book as well. It has a lot within its pages that can help children to better understand that just because things aren’t alright for them all the time, that it isn’t always going to be like that. It can also help to show them that it may take them time to find their place, but once they do, everything should start making more sense for them and they should begin to find their place and fit in. Most importantly, it should be able to show them that there is hope for a better tomorrow.

Final Conclusion: 5 Star Rating.