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Elatsoe
Cover of Elatsoe
Elatsoe
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A National Indie BestsellerTIME's Best 100 Fantasy Books of All TimeAn NPR Best Book of 2020A Booklist's Top 10 First Novel for YouthA BookPage Best Book of 2020A CPL "Best of the Best" BookA...
A National Indie BestsellerTIME's Best 100 Fantasy Books of All TimeAn NPR Best Book of 2020A Booklist's Top 10 First Novel for YouthA BookPage Best Book of 2020A CPL "Best of the Best" BookA...
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Description-

  • A National Indie Bestseller
    TIME's Best 100 Fantasy Books of All Time
    An NPR Best Book of 2020
    A Booklist's Top 10 First Novel for Youth
    A BookPage Best Book of 2020
    A CPL "Best of the Best" Book
    A Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2020
    A Buzzfeed Best YA SFF Book of 2020
    A Shelf Awareness Best Book of 2020
    An AICL Best YA Book of 2020
    A Kirkus Best YA Book of 2020
    A Tor Best Book of 2020
    PRAISE
    "Groundbreaking." —TIME
    "Deeply enjoyable from start to finish." —NPR
    "Utterly magical." —SyFyWire
    "Atmospheric and lyrical...a gorgeous work of art." —BuzzFeed
    "One of the best YA debuts of 2020. Read it." —Marieke Nijkamp
    FIVE STARRED REVIEWS
    ★ "A fresh voice and perspective." —Booklist, starred review
    ★ "A unique and powerful Native American voice." —BookPage, starred review
    ★ "A brilliant, engaging debut." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review
    ★ "A fast-paced murder mystery." —Publishers Weekly, starred review
    ★ "A Lipan Apache Sookie Stackhouse for the teen set." —Shelf-Awareness, starred review
    A Texas teen comes face-to-face with a cousin's ghost and vows to unmask the murderer.
    Elatsoe—Ellie for short—lives in an alternate contemporary America shaped by the ancestral magics and knowledge of its Indigenous and immigrant groups. She can raise the spirits of dead animals—most importantly, her ghost dog Kirby. When her beloved cousin dies, all signs point to a car crash, but his ghost tells her otherwise: He was murdered.
    Who killed him and how did he die? With the help of her family, her best friend Jay, and the memory great, great, great, great, great, great grandmother, Elatsoe, must track down the killer and unravel the mystery of this creepy town and its dark past. But will the nefarious townsfolk and a mysterious Doctor stop her before she gets started?
    A breathtaking debut novel featuring an asexual, Apache teen protagonist, Elatsoe combines mystery, horror, noir, ancestral knowledge, haunting illustrations, fantasy elements, and is one of the most-talked about debuts of the year.
 

Awards-

About the Author-

  • Darcie Little Badger is an Earth scientist, writer, and fan of the weird, beautiful, and haunting. She is an enrolled member of the Lipan Apache Tribe of Texas. Her Locus Award-winning debut novel, <i>Elatsoe</i>, was a National Indie Bestseller, named to over a dozen best-of-year lists, and called one of the Best 100 Fantasy Novels of All Time by <i>TIME</i>. Her second novel, <i>A Snake Falls to Earth</i> was longlisted for the National Book Award for Young People's Literature and received a Newbery Award Honor.

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from June 22, 2020
    Indigenous myths, modern-day technology, and the supernatural successfully blend to build a fast-paced murder mystery in Little Badger’s intriguing solo debut. After 17-year-old, asexual Ellie’s older cousin Trevor is fatally injured in an apparent car accident, he comes to her in a dream, identifying his killer and begging her to protect his family. Lipan Apache Ellie, named for her “heroic ancestor”—her maternal sixth-great-grandmother, Elatsoe, now known as “Six-Great”—has inherited from her the gift of waking and training ghosts, and sets out to reveal the accident as a crime and unmask the killer. Accom-panied by her faithful sidekick, the ghost of her dead dog Kirby, her loyal friend, “white Celtic-and-Nordic-American” cheerleader Jay, and actively supported by her understanding parents, Ellie battles with ghosts, vampires, and exorcists in a series of suspenseful confrontations—including a descent into an underworld of trilobite fossils—that increase in intensity and eventually solidify her place in her strong maternal lineage of Native protectors. Cai’s grayscale spot illustrations imbue the book with shadowy breath and movement, bringing a lyrical undertone to the energetic plot and multifaceted, refreshing voice. Ages 12–up. Author’s agent: Michael Curry, Donald Maass Literary.

  • School Library Journal

    July 1, 2020

    Gr 5 Up-Elatsoe (Ellie) is a Lipan Apache teen who lives in Texas, where bizarre supernatural occurrences are the norm and people encounter magic, monsters, shape-shifters, and various supernatural events beyond reason. Ellie has inherited the spiritual skills of her people and has raised the ghost of her dog Kirby. A shimmering mass, Kirby is a loyal companion who alerts Ellie to danger and has the ability to move through walls. Ellie uses her supernatural abilities and keen observation skills to investigate the gruesome, suspicious death of her cousin Trevor. The story opens deceptively slow with abundant character introduction, but the turning point arrives when Ellie dreams about Trevor and he reveals the murderer's identity. Ellie and her friend Jay visit a library to research the paranormal history of the Texas town where her cousin was killed. They discover that the blood of vulnerable people is a key to one doctor's cures. In a time-bending web of travel between past, present, and the underworld, Ellie confronts the killer. The dramatic ending will engage readers, and is a worthy payoff for the somewhat slow introductory pace. VERDICT Ellie's family's cultural beliefs and status as Indigenous people are presented well in the context of this supernatural fantasy. Recommended for fans of the genre.-Naomi Caldwell, Alabama State Univ., Montgomery

    Copyright 2020 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Kirkus

    Starred review from June 15, 2020
    A teenager with supernatural gifts must solve her cousin's murder before it's too late. Aside from the fact that she owns a ghost dog named Kirby, Ellie is like any other comic book-loving, ice cream-eating Lipan Apache teenager. Her non-Native friends include her childhood buddy Jay, who is white, and her cousin Trevor's Latinx wife, Lenore. Yet Ellie does have traits that set her apart: She has inherited the talents of Six-Great-Grandmother, her powerful Lipan Apache forebear, and plans to skip college to work as a paranormal investigator. When Trevor dies in what appears to be a car accident, his ghost appears to her briefly, begging that she protect his wife and child. Ellie must call upon her strong lineage to rid her ancestral land of an ancient curse. Even as she discovers some of her own tribal relatives have been complicit in historic wrongdoing, she must save her family, animals, and community from destructive forces and restore balance to the world. A fast-paced whodunit set in a contemporary world like our own, this is a creative fusion of Indigenous cultural influences and supernatural fantasy. A brilliant, engaging debut written by a talented author, it seamlessly blends cyberstalking with Vampire Citizen Centers and Lipan Apache stories. This groundbreaking introduction to the fantasy genre remains relevant to Native histories even as it imaginatively looks to the future. Educates about settler colonialism while also entertaining with paranormal twists. (Speculative fiction. 13-18)

    COPYRIGHT(2020) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Booklist

    Starred review from July 1, 2020
    Grades 9-12 *Starred Review* Ellie Bride is an intelligent, determined, and asexual young Native woman with the ability to bring the dead back to life, as demonstrated through her stalwart companion, Kirby the poltergeist puppy. One rule remains unchanging, though: humans must never be brought back from the underworld. After Ellie's beloved cousin dies and reveals the murderer to her in dreams, she must find a way to unravel the truth behind the eerie town of Willowbee, Texas, and work with her premonitions, her family, and her fae-descended best friend to keep everyone safe from a vengeful ghost. Little Badger's stunning, haunting debut brings to the fantasy genre a fresh voice and perspective, weaving in folktales, omens, and urban legends of the protagonist's Lipan Apache culture. Illuminated by Cai's intricately beautiful chapter-opening illustrations and interspersed with Apache terminology and mythology, often presented through stories of Ellie's namesake and ancestor, Six-Great, Little Badger's fast-paced, spine-tingling mystery follows Ellie the aspiring PI (paranormal investigator) and her allies as they battle vampires, spirits, curses, and familial and personal grief to overcome an evil that threatens to end them all. Older readers raised on series like the Spiderwick Chronicles or Artemis Fowl will delight in Ellie's tongue-in-cheek, self-assured voice, as well as her adventures with the mystical and magical elements that run through her lineage.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2020, American Library Association.)

  • The Horn Book

    July 1, 2020
    This absorbing and haunting speculative fiction debut challenges expectations at every turn. Ellie (short for Elatsoe) is seventeen years old, Lipan Apache, and an aspiring paranormal investigator. She has inherited her Six-Great-Grandmother's ability to awaken the spirits of the dead, a talent she regularly employs (notably, the ghost of Kirby, her beloved English springer spaniel). When Ellie's cousin Trevor dies suddenly, his spirit appears in a dream, revealing that he was murdered and pleading for help. This leads Ellie, her family, and her best friend to the (fictional) southern Texas town of Willowbee, a disturbing setting with a pristine facade and dark secrets. Little Badger effectively weaves stories within stories in this multilayered, metaphorical, and magical mystery. Plot, setting, and dialogue are eerily and compellingly delineated; reflections on counternarratives and colonialism are woven seamlessly alongside subplots containing fairy rings, vampires, evil wizard doctors, and the underworld. As Ellie uncovers more about what happened to her cousin, she also develops deeper understandings about herself and about history: "History is intrinsically malleable. Even without magic. It's carried in our minds, our records." Cai's grayscale chapter illustrations reinforce mood as well as broader themes of identity, history, and family.

    (Copyright 2020 by The Horn Book, Incorporated, Boston. All rights reserved.)

  • The Horn Book

    September 1, 2020
    This absorbing and haunting speculative fiction debut challenges expectations at every turn. Ellie (short for Elatsoe) is seventeen years old, Lipan Apache, and an aspiring paranormal investigator. She has inherited her Six-Great-Grandmother's ability to awaken the spirits of the dead, a talent she regularly employs (notably, the ghost of Kirby, her beloved English springer spaniel). When Ellie's cousin Trevor dies suddenly, his spirit appears in a dream, revealing that he was murdered and pleading for help. This leads Ellie, her family, and her best friend to the (fictional) southern Texas town of Willowbee, a disturbing setting with a pristine facade and dark secrets. Little Badger effectively weaves stories within stories in this multilayered, metaphorical, and magical mystery. Plot, setting, and dialogue are eerily and compellingly delineated; reflections on counternarratives and colonialism are woven seamlessly alongside subplots containing fairy rings, vampires, evil wizard doctors, and the underworld. As Ellie uncovers more about what happened to her cousin, she also develops deeper understandings about herself and about history: "History is intrinsically malleable. Even without magic. It's carried in our minds, our records." Cai's grayscale chapter illustrations reinforce mood as well as broader themes of identity, history, and family. Elisa Gall

    (Copyright 2020 by The Horn Book, Incorporated, Boston. All rights reserved.)

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