Liesl – small, quiet, locked away in the attic - is the unlikely heroine of this adventure when she and her new (and only) friend Po begin a journey to properly bury her father’s ashes. Po is a ghost, and the ashes are not actually ashes but the most powerful magic ever made by the creepy alchemist of her village. Fate draws Will, the alchemist’s “useless” assistant, to Liesl’s side as they both must escape the cruel and heartless adults around them. Publisher’s Weekly says Liesl & Po is “invigorating and hopeful” and “testifies to the power of friendship and generosity to conquer greed and depression.” Readers who enjoy the paranormal magic of Garth Nix’s “Keys to the Kingdom” or Laura Amy Schlitz’s Newbery-honor book Splendors and Glooms should check out this excellent stand-alone title.
Reviewed by Jennifer