Reviews

Elatsoe, by Darcie Little Badger

thatbookishgnome's review

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adventurous emotional mysterious medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.5

aswbda's review

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emotional mysterious medium-paced
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes

3.75

sarajuni's review

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adventurous mysterious medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.0

alyssmckell's review

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adventurous emotional mysterious fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? N/A
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? N/A

3.5

mia_difelice's review

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adventurous emotional mysterious fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

3.75

Charming. Family and ancestors. Friendship. Wholesome. Shennanigans. Mysterious. Spooky. Magic. Magical realism. Ghosts. History. Myths and legends. Storytelling. 

Really fun use of magic, myth, and legend in a world that is quite like our own but full of the stuff of fairytales. Interspersed with old stories of Elatsoe's Six-Great grandmother and how she used her powers in the past. Wholesome family and friendship dynamics that will make you smile. Thoughtful notes on grief and different folks' reaction to it. Mystery van-Scooby Doo-type shennanigans, with a rich villain masquerading as a hero but spoiler:
Spoilerthe whole town is in on it. Perhaps a symbol for complicity with colonizer/white supremacy?
. Writing style and plot developments are both charming, sometimes corny, but overall endearing. 

CW: some gruesome/violent scenes, not labored on but graphic.

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brennieree33's review

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3.0

3.5 stars

I really enjoyed Elatsoe. There was a lot of fun Native lore to explore, good rep, and an exciting plot. I enjoyed all of the characters and thought that the way Ellie's powers worked was really cool and fun. My only true complaint is that this reads like middle grade, and the reason I know it isn't is because of all the swearing. But overall, certainly a good debut. Welcome to the writing scene, Ms. Little Badger.

TW: blood, murder, abuse of power, near-death experiences, drowing

Spoiler
-I absolutely love this idea of America but with magic, but I really wish that the worldbuilding was more developed. I want to know more about how the world changed because there's magic. How did history change? How is everyday life more dangerous? Fun? I feel like this was more "regular life + ghosts"
-I loved the rep in this book. Native American, asexual, male cheerleader, black, etc. There was just so much to dig into and relate to in the book and I really enjoyed that aspect. Ellie talking about how she goes out of her way to prove she didn't steal anything because of her race is so heartbreaking, but I'm glad that she talked about it.
-I loved the stories of Six-Great and the narrative ties and mirrors she has to Ellie. Just nice fun writing stuff
-One strange thing about this book is that it reads like middle grade, but it uses words like hell. I think that Little Badger needed to decide who she wanted to write for and stick with it, really thinking about what she should say for that audience. This book is supposed to be YA, but speaks down to read like middle grade. The only reason I know it isn't middle grade is because of the swearing and amount of blood.
-I like how she defeated Abe. Just drag the sucker to the underworld and let him stay there and pay. I like that that was foreshadowed and not just "yeah, all of a sudden she has the power to do this." It was nicely foreshadowed and Little Badger did good at adding some dread and sacrifice to that decision.
-I liked the little POC chapter from Vivian. I really liked her character, and it was cool to get to see more of her. I wonder why she has less control over ghosts. Interesting.

elizafiedler's review

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5.0

Awesome story with ghosts, fae, evil wizards, and a Very Good Dog.

daylightlotus's review

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emotional
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes

4.0

mimela78's review

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adventurous mysterious tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? It's complicated
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0

A story that includes Apache history, ghosts, wizards, and vampires was not the book I thought I was missing in my life. I couldn’t have been more wrong. Strong writing makes you want to savor every page while the pace of events keeps you turning pages. Best book of the year. 

smileodon's review

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adventurous hopeful lighthearted fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.0