Garlic & the Vampire

Garlic & the Vampire cover
Garlic & the Vampire by Bree Paulsen

By Bree Paulsen
Quill Tree, 2021
151 pages

Ages 7-10

Oversleeping on Market Day confirms Garlic’s worries that she’s a disappointment to those around her. Brought to life with a number of other vegetables by kind Witch Agnes, Garlic (a personified garlic head on a human-like body) is most comfortable in the security of her garden plot, growing garlic for the humans in the village. But the arrival of a vampire at a nearby castle threatens those humans, and petulant Celery is eager to suggest that Garlic is the obvious choice to confront the newcomer and determine his intentions (she’s garlic after all, and it’s a vampire). Garlic is truly afraid to go, but she does it anyway because it’s the right thing to do. To his dismay, Witch Agnes appoints Celery to accompany her. Celery bails at the first opportunity, but Garlic continues in spite of her fear, only to discover that the vampire isn’t so scary after all. In fact, he’s just as gentle and affable as Witch Agnes. This charming graphic novel soft pedals the scariness while delivering a sentient vegetable as memorable heroine.  ©2022 Cooperative Children’s Book Center