(February 1, 2021) Cartoonist Nie Jun’s stunning graphic novel debut, My Beijing: Four Stories of Everyday Wonder, captivated and charmed critics and readers alike with its depiction of life in a small neighborhood in Beijing. The book was nominated for an Eisner Award, selected as an Batchelder Honor Book, and received a glowing write up in the New York Times Book Review. This spring, Nie Jun will release his eagerly anticipated follow up: an ambitious, four-volume graphic novel series titled SEEKERS OF THE AWETO, which takes readers on a poetic adventure across medieval China. The debut title, THE HUNT IS ON, will be published by Graphic Universe, an imprintof Lerner Publishing Group, on March 2, 2021.
In THE HUNT IS ON, Xinyue, his brother Qiliu, and their mother are seekers, hunting aweto―a rare, plantlike treasure. A single aweto has the power to cure the ill. Its rarest form may even grant eternal life. To seize their bounty, the seekers must rob the massive, majestic earth deities from which aweto sprout—sometimes leaving a trail of chaos behind them.
One day, after an outing on the legendary Silk Road, Xinyue discovers the offspring of a deity that creates aweto and becomes the little creature’s reluctant caretaker. Now he must keep it safe and keep it a secret. But warriors from the creature’s village are close behind, and more fearsome thieves wait ahead….
Translated from the original Chinese, THE HUNT IS ON is a visual feast, filled with beautiful watercolor landscapes, intricately detailed maps, and magnificent imaginary creatures. Jun’s fantastical take on the unique historical setting of medieval China imbues the world with wonder, humor, and magic.
THE HUNT IS ON, the first book in the SEEKERS OF THE AWETO series, will be available in bookstores on March 2nd and in comic shops on March 3rd.