Ride back to Republic City on your polar dog bear in An Avatar’s Chronicle, an illustrated scrapbook of Avatar Korra’s adventures from Nickelodeon’s hit series The Legend of Korra! Written by author Andrea Robinson and beautifully drawn by Sora Medina, this book walks the reader through Korra’s childhood, her training to master all four elements, her battles against intimidating adversaries, and ultimately her journey from a hot-headed young girl to a fully-fledged Avatar.
If your memory’s a little rusty, An Avatar’s Chronicle is a great way to get reacquainted with Team Avatar and the world they live in and protect. The storyline, in a nutshell, is that Tenzin, Korra’s long suffering but patient air bender teacher, has assigned Korra to record her journey from childhood to veteran Avatar in a journal so that future Avatars can learn from her failures and triumphs. Korra unsurprisingly tries to get away with only writing a page, but Tenzin isn’t having it. So, to quickly fill up the journal and save her time and avoid work, Korra recruits her friends to write letters and share their own memories and experiences gained during their journeys with Korra.
The book is structured like a scrapbook, filled with letters, photos, and keepsakes from season one to season four. What makes the book special is that it is written from Korra’s point of view; you get a feel of her emotions, thoughts, and opinions. The back and forth between letters from Tenzin and Korra is especially hilarious, given Korra’s laziness, Tenzin’s dry sarcasm, and their opposite personalities. What stood out was the importance of relationships—spanning from friendship to the romantic—and how these bonds helped Korra learn from her mistakes and gradually develop into a compassionate and wiser person.
A bittersweet aspect of this book is Korra initially glossing over her pain and emotional scars from her old enemies (Amon, Unalaq, Zaheer and the Red Lotus, and Kuvira), and, at Tenzin’s gentle prodding, gradually accepting the fact that she needs to relive her traumatic memories in order to complete her journal, not just for future Avatars but for her own sake as well. Like the television show points out, we can never be fully balanced or at peace until we look at the things or people that have hurt us greatly and accept or forgive them and move on.
The illustrations are gorgeous, and they capture the personalities of all of the characters from the show. The best ones, in this reviewer’s opinion, shows Team Avatar and friends in the same frame, repeatedly showing that the best way to live life is with family and friends. Other beautiful artwork includes locations such as the Spirit Wilds, Republic City Park, and Katara’s healing hut.
An Avatar’s Chronicle is the perfect companion book for any Legend of Korra fan. It’s a great way to dive back into the world that we’ve come to know and love. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself binge watching the entire show after reading this book.
Special thanks to Insight Editions who provided a free copy of An Avatar’s Chronicle!