After two very beautiful volumes published in 2021, “Le Grimoire d’Elfie” returns this November to Drakoo editions with a new volume entitled “Malaventure en pain d’épices” which smells good of the Christmas atmosphere. Direction Alsace for Elfie and his sisters, for a whole new adventure full of energy and magic. Let’s go for our opinion!
Synopsis : As Christmas approaches, the bus-bookstore of Elfie and her sisters is immobilized by a breakdown, in Alsace. There, Elfie shares her secret for the first time: Faustine, daughter of the village pastry chef, is also a little witch! But Faustine is above all a disaster miss who finds herself in impossible situations and counts on Elfie to help her get out of it… Between a snowstorm and attacks by gingerbread men, Elfie will discover a family enigma dating from the Second World War, which could well change the life of the village.
For this new volume, we find with great pleasure Christophe Arleston and Audrey Alwett in the screenplay, as well as Mini Ludvin in the drawing. Direction Alsace therefore for our heroines, the region being the ideal place for a Christmas story. It is following a bus breakdown that Elfie, Magda and Louette will discover the village of Streusel and its inhabitants, and Elfie will soon make a friend and discover that magic is present in these places. She is the only one who sees the true nature of the village pastry, which is made of gingerbread. Elfie meets Faustine and her mother, a powerful witch-baker who treats the people of the village. Faustine is accompanied by her familiar, a little gingerbread man, who will be at the origin of one of the misadventures of our heroines. Events, there are a lot in this volume 3, which is really very rich and dynamic. Between the invasion of the gingerbread men at the Gremlinsthe snowstorm that puts Elfie and his new friend in a very bad position in the forest and the letters dating from the Second World War found, we can say that we are not bored!
Alsace is a superb region, and Mini Ludvin really does it justice, with very detailed illustrations. Between the very special houses of the region, the scenes filled with gingerbread men and the snowy forest, the designer had plenty to do, based on the photos brought back by Christophe Arleston and Audrey Alwett after their trip there. It’s very beautiful and immersive, with vibrant colors. The magic is always there, with an advent calendar full of surprises, a cooking session with music or even the appearance of a stork who is far too cold and dreams of returning to Africa. There are a few touches of humor that hit home, and the usual themes of the series, mainly related to family or respect, are once again addressed. And then there is this little narrative arc related to the Second World War, with these letters found by Elfie but which are impossible for him to translate. Louette indeed meets a young man (he is going to lend him a hand for the bus) who has an interesting family history. The Second World War is part of the history of Alsace, and its integration into the story is really successful, remaining in the background but passing some strong messages. We also find all these great layout ideas, with excerpts from Elfie’s diarywho tell us more about the events and his feelings.
With each new volume of “Le Grimoire d’Elfie”, we discover a new region, its inhabitants and their customs. Alsace is the ideal choice for this end of the year, the spirit of Christmas being very present. Add to that the dose of magic and the usual good humor in the series, and you get a volume that is still just as effective, and that knows how to be serious when it comes to tackling certain themes related to family or history. . The series therefore continues successfully, and we can’t wait to discover Elfie’s next adventures.