Eva has turned twelve, and her magical powers have finally emerged. They’re limited, sometimes confusing, and always tiring for Eva to use, but they finally exist! As a result, Eva is ready to become an apprentice witch and go on her novice quest. But when Eva visits a magical bookstore to retrieve the books she’ll need for her journey, her name is not on the novice list.
Eva’s mother takes her to the Council of Witches and Wizards to deal with the omission, and the two of them learn that the council wants to extract Eva’s small amount of magic. Eva argues back using the laws regarding quests, and the council grudgingly agrees to give her a train ticket that will turn to ash when she reaches the town she is most needed at.
Eva sets off on her train ride, and falls asleep after performing some magic to help a fellow passenger. Hours later, she wakes up at Auteri, the town at the end of the line, unsure of which town she was actually supposed to travel to. With no better option, she decides to stay in Auteri – provided the mayor agrees.
Auteri’s mayor doesn’t want an apprentice witch, but she agrees to let Eva stay after she helps rescue people from a shipwreck. The mayor extracts one promise from Eva: that she will work on protecting their city from the culling – a magical disaster that strikes their realm roughly once every year.
The next day, Eva starts a magical repair business. Her first few fixes are rough, and they all have unintended consequences. But she gradually learns that her talents lie in fixing things with a combination of magic and physical supplies. The more she fixes, the more her magical power grows, and she starts casting spells to protect individual buildings in Auteri.
Will Eva’s business succeed? Will she make herself useful enough for the mayor to sign off on her novice quest? Can she protect Auteri from the culling?
Eva Evergreen Semi-Magical Witch by Julie Abe is shelved upstairs, in the juvenile imaginative section of the Children’s Department.
If you enjoy Eva Evergreen Semi-Magical Witch, you may also like Kiki’s Delivery Service by Eiko Kadono.
Like Eva, Kiki is an apprentice witch who has to leave home and offer her magical services. She settles in a large town on the ocean and, without her mother’s talents in potion brewing, starts a delivery service flying on her broom. But when she loses her confidence, her magical abilities falter as well. Can she recover them?
Kiki’s Delivery Service is shelved upstairs, in our juvenile imaginative section, and the (wonderful) Studio Ghibli animated film is shelved in the children’s movies section upstairs.