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As a biracial, unenrolled tribal member and the product of a scandal, eighteen-year-old Daunis Fontaine has never quite fit in, both in her hometown and on the nearby Ojibwe reservation. Daunis dreams of studying medicine, but when her family is struck by tragedy, she puts her future on hold to care for her fragile mother. The only bright spot is meeting Jamie, the charmin As a biracial, unenrolled tribal member and the product of a scandal, eighteen-year-old Daunis Fontaine has never quite fit in, both in her hometown and on the nearby Ojibwe reservation. Daunis dreams of studying medicine, but when her family is struck by tragedy, she puts her future on hold to care for her fragile mother. The only bright spot is meeting Jamie, the charming new recruit on her brother Levi’s hockey team. Yet even as Daunis falls for Jamie, certain details don’t add up and she senses the dashing hockey star is hiding something. Everything comes to light when Daunis witnesses a shocking murder, thrusting her into the heart of a criminal investigation. Reluctantly, Daunis agrees to go undercover, but secretly pursues her own investigation, tracking down the criminals with her knowledge of chemistry and traditional medicine. But the deceptions—and deaths—keep piling up and soon the threat strikes too close to home. Now, Daunis must learn what it means to be a strong Anishinaabe kwe (Ojibwe woman) and how far she'll go to protect her community, even if it tears apart the only world she’s ever known. Debut author Angeline Boulley crafts a groundbreaking YA thriller about a Native teen who must root out the corruption in her community, for readers of Angie Thomas and Tommy Orange. Alternate cover edition of ISBN 9781250766564.


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As a biracial, unenrolled tribal member and the product of a scandal, eighteen-year-old Daunis Fontaine has never quite fit in, both in her hometown and on the nearby Ojibwe reservation. Daunis dreams of studying medicine, but when her family is struck by tragedy, she puts her future on hold to care for her fragile mother. The only bright spot is meeting Jamie, the charmin As a biracial, unenrolled tribal member and the product of a scandal, eighteen-year-old Daunis Fontaine has never quite fit in, both in her hometown and on the nearby Ojibwe reservation. Daunis dreams of studying medicine, but when her family is struck by tragedy, she puts her future on hold to care for her fragile mother. The only bright spot is meeting Jamie, the charming new recruit on her brother Levi’s hockey team. Yet even as Daunis falls for Jamie, certain details don’t add up and she senses the dashing hockey star is hiding something. Everything comes to light when Daunis witnesses a shocking murder, thrusting her into the heart of a criminal investigation. Reluctantly, Daunis agrees to go undercover, but secretly pursues her own investigation, tracking down the criminals with her knowledge of chemistry and traditional medicine. But the deceptions—and deaths—keep piling up and soon the threat strikes too close to home. Now, Daunis must learn what it means to be a strong Anishinaabe kwe (Ojibwe woman) and how far she'll go to protect her community, even if it tears apart the only world she’s ever known. Debut author Angeline Boulley crafts a groundbreaking YA thriller about a Native teen who must root out the corruption in her community, for readers of Angie Thomas and Tommy Orange. Alternate cover edition of ISBN 9781250766564.

30 review for Firekeeper's Daughter

  1. 5 out of 5

    Nilufer Ozmekik

    Let’s dive into one of the best and most anticipated debuts of the year! Well I had truly wonderful reading experience! I learned tons about Native American culture including traditions, language, history, the way how they use plants to turn them into natural medicines, their deep knowledge about chemistry, the survival skills! Instead of great introduction to native culture, the powerful, layered characterization were the basic strength of this journey. The intense back stories, strong construct Let’s dive into one of the best and most anticipated debuts of the year! Well I had truly wonderful reading experience! I learned tons about Native American culture including traditions, language, history, the way how they use plants to turn them into natural medicines, their deep knowledge about chemistry, the survival skills! Instead of great introduction to native culture, the powerful, layered characterization were the basic strength of this journey. The intense back stories, strong construction around tribal council which is an independent character of this book with its own dynamics, functioning mechanisms, beliefs, its uniqueness pick your interest and drag you into this vivid, eccentric and enigmatic world. The heart wrenching story inside the tribe, the young adults’ murders related to drug trafficking which slowly spreads and takes more innocent lives were the powerful mystery of plot line. 18 years Daunis, biracial, dork, smart, sensitive, tough, powerful heroine you truly want to hug and care for! She’s a scandalous child of underage white mother from wealthy family and Native American father who loses his hockey career after a terrible accident and cheats on Daunis’ mother with another girl. Even though Daunis deeply connects with her Native American heritage, she’s still not part of the tribal. She’s pale like a ghost, feeling like not belonging to any community, an outsider who recently loses her dream to pursue her career in sports. And her uncle David’s sudden relapse and dying from overdose, her grandma’s stroke forces her to change her plans about college. She is not gonna live her hometown! It seems like relieving news for her star hockey player brother Levi and her best friend Lily who recently broke up from meth addict boyfriend Travis. And of course there’s a new hottie hockey player Jaime joined the team might be good reason for her hanging around. She becomes ambassador of mysterious, charming athlete. Even the scar covers his face makes him more charismatic. They slowly get closer but Jaime has so many secrets. Those secrets break out as someone so close to Daunis get hurt which put her difficult situation. Somebody is drug trafficking inside her community, taking innocent lives and with her connections, science knowledge, Daunis can be great asset for the investigation to solve the mystery. And of course she gets nothing to lose because she cannot let something happens to her loved ones! She already lost too much! The author professionally handles so many sensitive and triggering subjects including abuse, addiction, sexual assault, grief in this book and her emotional wrapping up the story made me cry so hard! It was so deep! So meaningful! So inspirational! I was planning to give four stars but I decided it was not fair. I truly invested in this story so I’m giving my full shiny five Ojibwe stars! This is one of the best books of the year and one of my favorite reads I highly recommend!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Paromjit

    This is a stunning debut from Angeline Boulley, set in Sault Ste. Marie, in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, amongst the Native American Ojibwe community. 18 year old Daunis Fontaine is biracial, an unenrolled tribal member, the child of a scandal, who whilst never quite fitting in with her fragile and vulnerable white mother's family, nor the other half of her Indigenous family, and community, nevertheless lives her daily life immersed in both. She is weighed by down by the disappointing loss of her This is a stunning debut from Angeline Boulley, set in Sault Ste. Marie, in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, amongst the Native American Ojibwe community. 18 year old Daunis Fontaine is biracial, an unenrolled tribal member, the child of a scandal, who whilst never quite fitting in with her fragile and vulnerable white mother's family, nor the other half of her Indigenous family, and community, nevertheless lives her daily life immersed in both. She is weighed by down by the disappointing loss of her Uncle David, a teacher, a meth death, and the stroke suffered by GrandMary, they say bad luck comes in threes, Daunis is sincerely hoping not. A gifted scientist, Daunis has put off going to the University of Michigan, and is instead intending to attend college locally with her lifelong best friend, Lily Chippeway, so that she can be there for her mother. Hockey mad, Daunis agrees to act as ambassador and introduce new player, Jamie, to the area and community as he joins her on her early morning runs. The first part of the book embeds the reader into Daunis's life and history, her close relationship with her protective hockey playing half brother, Levi, and the rest of her indigenous family, including her badass Aunt Teddie. We are immersed in the historical atrocities and racism that have marked the painful history of the tribes, along with a picture of the culture, structures, contemporary politics, traditional medicine, rituals, ceremonies, tribal elders, with everyday community and family interactions. There is a focus on the growing blight of lives lost to meths, with the rising numbers of 'lost' boys and girls, as can be seen with Travis, Lily's ex-boyfriend. There is prodigious use of and explanation of indigenous words and concepts, the teachings of the good way of life by the 7 grandfathers through love, humility, respect, honesty, bravery, wisdom, and truth, pillars that are to inform Daunis's harrowing investigation. As tragedy strikes, shattering Daunis, she finds herself agreeing to go undercover as a confidential agent, looking into meths production and distribution that is destroying the future of the community. Boulley writes a utterly riveting, complex and multilayered novel, rooted in, insightful and informative of, the Ojiwbe community that the central protagonist, Daunis, belongs to and is committed to, as she tries to protect their interests and future, outside agencies like the FBI may not necessarily do that or even see this as important. This is a fascinating and thrilling read, tense and suspenseful, with a strong central protagonist facing the complications of hockey, community and family ties, corruption and murder, not to mention a personal relationship that is hard to trust and believe in. Given the sexism, misogyny and sexual assaults, I took comfort in the depiction of the strong independent women and the ritual of the 'blanket party'. Part of the joy of reading this is the educational elements of learning about indigenous communities, such as the traditions and rituals that lie behind the critical role of the Firekeeper. Highly recommended. Many thanks to Oneworld Publications for an ARC.

  3. 5 out of 5

    sol

    do yall see this cover?? ARE YOU SEEING THIS COVER?? the flavor is immaculate

  4. 4 out of 5

    Nenia ✨ I yeet my books back and forth ✨ Campbell

    Instagram || Twitter || Facebook || Amazon || Pinterest DNF @ p.51 I have too many books and too little time, so I no longer finish books I'm not interested in. That doesn't necessarily mean a book is objectively bad but please keep in mind that when I review, I am writing a review for ME, so "good" and "bad" for me might not be "good" and "bad" for you. I say this because even though this book has wildly positive ratings on Goodreads, I kind of feel like I read a totally different book from e Instagram || Twitter || Facebook || Amazon || Pinterest DNF @ p.51 I have too many books and too little time, so I no longer finish books I'm not interested in. That doesn't necessarily mean a book is objectively bad but please keep in mind that when I review, I am writing a review for ME, so "good" and "bad" for me might not be "good" and "bad" for you. I say this because even though this book has wildly positive ratings on Goodreads, I kind of feel like I read a totally different book from everyone else who liked it and sometimes I think people think I am speaking for all and sundry when I write my reviews. There were things about it I loved: the cover (obviously), the premise (it kind of sounded like an #ownvoices YA version of Longmire, which would be AMAZING), and the emphasis on Ojibwe culture (including language). What ended up making this book a miss for me is that it was really boring. Not a lot was happening. There were a ton of info-dumps and it felt like there were way too many characters introduced too quickly which made it hard to figure out who was who and what their relationships to one another were. The heroine also came across as sounding slightly bland just because she came across as a vehicle for all of this weighty info-dumping, so by the time the murder finally came around (I skimmed to about p.200 to try to see if it was worth reading), I was just feeling completely exhausted by the thought of continuing. You might very well enjoy this book if you enjoy really dense, really long books that are more about the scenery than they are about the plot. I have trouble focusing on books that don't have a lot happening, but I know some people are really into setting. If you're into setting, this will be great for you. Likewise, the heroine's voice felt kind of "generic teen girl" to me but I know some people like a more unobtrusive narrator because it enables them to project into the head of the main character more easily. So the two things that made this a "bad" book for me might make it "good" for someone else. I'm sorry I didn't enjoy this more, but oh well. Thanks to the publisher for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review! 2 stars

  5. 4 out of 5

    AnnaLuce

    / / / Read more reviews on my blog / / / DISCLAIMER: If you are thinking of reading this novel I recommend you check out some more positive reviews, especially ones from #ownvoices reviewers (such as Brandann Hill-Mann's review). I didn't hate this book it but I would be lying if I said that it didn't really, really, really frustrate me (because it did). 2½ stars (rounded up as this is a debut) I would have enjoyed this more if it hadn't been for Daunis being the definition of Not Like Other Girls. / / / Read more reviews on my blog / / / DISCLAIMER: If you are thinking of reading this novel I recommend you check out some more positive reviews, especially ones from #ownvoices reviewers (such as Brandann Hill-Mann's review). I didn't hate this book it but I would be lying if I said that it didn't really, really, really frustrate me (because it did). 2½ stars (rounded up as this is a debut) I would have enjoyed this more if it hadn't been for Daunis being the definition of Not Like Other Girls. Nancy Drew meets Winter Counts in this YA debut. The cover (look at that BEAUTY), the premise, the overwhelmingly positive reception, all lead me to believe that I too would love this. Fifteen-year-old me probably would have (loved it that is) but I am now at a point in my life where I am tired of reading books that elevate girls who are Not Like Other Girls and shame Other Girls. Firekeeper's Daughter follows eighteen-year-old Daunis, the daughter to a white mother, who happens to belong to one of the most 'powerful' families in her town, and an Ojibwe father. Understandably Daunis has always felt like an outsider as she is not an enrolled tribal member. Daunis feels deeply invested in her Native heritage and throughout the novel, we see her observing many Ojibwe customs and beliefs. Time and again she has to reconcile herself with the knowledge that white people such as her maternal grandparents see her Ojibwe side as "a flaw or burden to overcome". There are also those within the Sugar Island Ojibwe Tribe who view her as white, not truly part of their community. After witnessing a murder Daunis becomes entangled in an FBI investigation. Daunis agrees to help their investigation hoping to put an end to prevent drug-related deaths. A coming-of-age tale meets a slow-burn mystery-thriller that touches upon many serious and relevant issues while also including a not so unnecessary romance subplot and Riverdale-levels of drama. Before I move on to what I didn't like in this novel I will mention a few of the things that did in my opinion work. Angeline Boulley does a stellar job in bringing to life both Sault Sainte Marie and Sugar Island to life. Throughout the course of the story, Boulley celebrates Native, specifically Ojibwe, practices, beliefs, and history. Daunis is clearly proud of her Ojibwe heritage and this is wonderfully reflected in her narration. There are a lot of terms and expressions in Ojibwemowin, and that made Daunis' world all the more vivid. I also appreciated that the story doesn't shy away from showing the ramifications of colonialism, the everyday injustices faced by indigenous individuals and communities, the consequences of substance abuse (without wholly demonising drug abusers), how harmful stereotypes about indigenous cultures and peoples are, and how disrespectful cultural appropriation is. Through the mystery-thriller storyline, the narrative also explores drug trafficking and violence against indigenous women. Additionally, the story had a nice body-positive message which is always a nice surprise. And Granny June. She was cool, probably the only character I liked. I will take a leaf from Daunis (who is list-obsessed, because like all sciencey people she likes facts & logic) and list my various criticisms ( SPOILERS BELOW ): 1. Daunis being Not Like Other Girls. She excels at science, loves sports (BIG BOY sports like hockey, none of that girly bullshit), hates lipstick and makeup, doesn't wear skirts (puh-lease, she isn't one of Those Girls). Daunis is also FLAWLESS. You read that right. And please don't @ me saying that she makes some mistakes in her investigation. She is not a bloody detective. She's 18. No one expects her to be Hercule-bloody-Poirot. If she makes any injudicious choices these are nullified by the fact that she is ‘always' acting from a good place. She cares TOO much (about her community, her loved ones) and wants to protect those around her. How is that a flaw? So she doesn't trust the two undercover FBI agents and begins running her own investigation. I mean, how is not trusting the law enforcement a flaw? She's a bit quirky but that makes her all the more special (here we have the love interest saying to her: "I love how you see the world" *bleargh*). Curiously enough while the story tries to show how harmful misogynistic and sexist attitudes/mentalities are we have our female lead either slut-shaming Other Girls or making incredibly judgmental comments about them. She calls Other Girls, for example, the girlfriends of hockey players 'parasitic': "I won't be a wannabe anglerfish, trying to latch on to a guy who is already taken.". Other Girls are vain, they care about their looks, they go after guys who already have girlfriends, they have fake friendships with each other (not like Daunis and Lily), they are catty, superficial, stupid, girly, you name they are it. And at first, I genuinely thought that this would be Daunis' 'flaw'. The storyline would have her realise along the way that she is acting just like those men she dislikes so much...but no. Ah. As if. Daunis was right all along, time and again Other Girls are shown indeed to be horrible (we have the basic white girl with her inappropriate dreamcatcher tattoo or cruel Macy who has no female solidarity and does Daunis dirty). And why does Daunis always blame Other Girls instead of the guys who actually do the cheating? Because her dad cheated on her mum? Give me a break. The same happened to me but I am certainly not out there whining about 'anglerfishes'. Grow up Daunis. The only person who points this out is a Bad Guy so his comment is moot. How convenient. Worst of all, for all her specialness (Daunis is sciencey and sporty and look now she is involved in an undercover case and falling in love with a handsome and mysterious stranger) she was just such a dull character. 2. The jarring dissonance between the tone of Daunis’ narration (which makes her come across as being 14 rather than 18) and the story’s content (which include murder, drug abuse and trafficking, sexual assault, kidnapping, and many other clearly YA and up things). On the one hand, we have Daunis’ referring to anything related to her role in the FBI’s investigation as Secret Squirrel (the first Secret Squirrel lesson #1 was actually funny, “I am not paranoid, but the men listening to me are”). Secret Squirrel appears 36 times in the book. One too many if you ask me. Anyway, we have this silly squirrel nonsense that seems more suited to a Middle-Grade novel and then we have a rape scene. And don’t even get me started with the Guy Lies. Bah! Sometimes juxtaposing a cutesy protagonist with a story that has mature/serious content can work (I’m thinking of Harley Quinn) but here...it just did not work for me. Daunis’ childish language brought me out of the story. 3. The thriller storyline. It is Riverdale-levels of overblown. And yet also incredibly predictable. Who would have thunk it, the golden boy is not so golden! I am shook. This is the third book I can think of that does a similar not so shocking reveal. The baddies are so cartoonish it was just plain ridiculous. They had their villainous monologues in which they gloat as they explain their scheming to our heroes. Come on. Most of the ‘twists’ were either entirely predictable (Levi) or just OTT (the coach is also involved!). 4. The romance is low-key questionable. Yeah, she’s 18 but the guy, Jamie or whatever his name is, is 22. And an FBI agent. Working on this drug trafficking case. His main quality is that he is hot. He’s got abs, which our Daunis checks him out all of the time (a tad creepy if you ask me), he has a handsome face but no wait, he has a facial scar. Wow. Doesn’t that lend him an air of mystery?! He also pinches the bridge of his nose, all of the time. Their chemistry...wasn’t there. It seemed way too quick, insta-love sort of speed. Daunis acts like she doesn’t like him or trust him but she never shuts up about him or the feelings he makes her feel (butterflies and all that). To be fair, I liked the note the author ended their romance on (Daunis calling out Jamie for ‘needing’ her when the guy clearly needs some alone time). Jamie was boring, a generic YA male love interest (✓ mysterious past ✓ hot ✓ Not Like Other Boys). 5.Daunis’ parents are very...undefined. The mother is sad and sometimes talks to herself (revealing SECRETS). And yeah, the father is dead by the start of the story but it would have been nice to know his character, really know him. 6. The dynamics between secondary characters were vague. Don't Daunis and Levi share an auntie? Yet Levi and this auntie two never seem to mention each other or have scenes together (and if they do they certainly don't give us an impression of their relationship). 7. The time period...why was this story set in 2004? I still don’t get it. A way out of having characters use the internet? Search me. 8. Chapters ending in cheesy cliffhangers. 9. The lists. 10. The only gay character is dead... If you liked this novel, I'm honestly kind of jealous. I so wanted to like it. But much about it just did not work for me.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Erin || erins_library

    Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley is one of the most powerful and important books I’ve ever read. It made my heart feel so full and broken at the same time. As a Lingít reader, I appreciated how unapologetically Anishinaabe this novel was in it’s use of language, traditions, and culture that created such a rich world. The community was so real and visceral, I felt like I knew the characters, and I absolutely loved all of it. This book shines a valuable light on Anishinaabe people and iss Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley is one of the most powerful and important books I’ve ever read. It made my heart feel so full and broken at the same time. As a Lingít reader, I appreciated how unapologetically Anishinaabe this novel was in it’s use of language, traditions, and culture that created such a rich world. The community was so real and visceral, I felt like I knew the characters, and I absolutely loved all of it. This book shines a valuable light on Anishinaabe people and issues, which many other Indigenous communities across Turtle Island will see themselves reflected in. Boulley has delivered a masterpiece of Indigenous literature. It’s one I’ll be revisiting many times, and pushing on everyone I know. I would classify this as a young adult crime fiction, so I highly recommend going in as blind as you can. It added to my reading experience and had me gushing, screaming, and wishing I could talk to someone while I read it. And if you are usually turned off by a book being young adult, please don’t let that turn you away from this book. I highly recommend this to teen and adult readers. CW: Meth addiction, murder, grief, mourning, kidnapping, mention of drug overdose

  7. 4 out of 5

    Elle

    Just give me all of the YA thrillers. I’ll take them all!!!!

  8. 5 out of 5

    h o l l i s

    While this has not become a new favourite like I thought it might, I highly encourage all readers to consider picking up this book. I know we all feel differently about what a three star rating means but please know that I did really enjoy reading this. But what's more I just think this book deals with so many important things. The best way I can pitch this story is something along the lines of an Indigenous Veronica Mars. But unlike Neptune, this world balances more than just the haves and the h While this has not become a new favourite like I thought it might, I highly encourage all readers to consider picking up this book. I know we all feel differently about what a three star rating means but please know that I did really enjoy reading this. But what's more I just think this book deals with so many important things. The best way I can pitch this story is something along the lines of an Indigenous Veronica Mars. But unlike Neptune, this world balances more than just the haves and the have-nots, but also the dynamics of the Ojibwe community and those outside; of which Daunis, our biracial protagonist, knows well. The complexities of the Native community are explored beautifully (at least from this reader's perspective!) and while I never felt like I was being lectured to, I nonetheless wanted to know more. However, much like Neptune, there are some dark depths both in this setting and this community, so bear that in mind and seek out content warnings if you require them. I don't want to get too into the details of the plot itself as this unraveled in ways I wasn't expecting but I will say that what brought this down, and kept it from a higher rating, was I felt some weakness in the romance and maybe some of the layers of the whole mystery felt a little.. overblown? Too much? There is a lot going on in this debut. I think had a few off-shoot plotlines not been included it would've felt a little stronger, a little more contained, but I still enjoyed what this was at its core. That said, if you can suspend a little extra disbelief, which most of us do anyway when it comes to fiction, you might be okay. Additionally, there were also plenty of lovely passages and turns of phrases that absolutely have me keen to read whatever comes next for this author. If you've made it to the end of this review, and if you haven't already done so, I would highly recommend you also search out some #ownvoices reviews. 3.5 stars ** I received an ARC from the publisher (thank you!) in exchange for an honest review. ** ---- This review can also be found at A Take From Two Cities.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Sam

    I literally could not put this book down. Read over a few hours from early evening to the early hours of the morning, I was glued to Firekeeper's Daughter, a stunning YA debut by Angeline Boulley that is harrowing, disturbing, triggering, informative, beautiful, transcendent. It's a thriller but also a cultural story, a coming of age tale, and a tale of love between individuals and within an Ojibwe community, and Boulley does a really tremendous job weaving all of these elements together and I literally could not put this book down. Read over a few hours from early evening to the early hours of the morning, I was glued to Firekeeper's Daughter, a stunning YA debut by Angeline Boulley that is harrowing, disturbing, triggering, informative, beautiful, transcendent. It's a thriller but also a cultural story, a coming of age tale, and a tale of love between individuals and within an Ojibwe community, and Boulley does a really tremendous job weaving all of these elements together and really letting her protagonist, our heroine Daunis, come to the fore as a teen making sense of her past, finding her place in the present, and charting her future. I went in knowing almost nothing about this book - got reeled in by the colors and illustration of the cover! - and was caught off guard by the combination of the easily accessible writing and the depth and richness of Daunis describing her Anishinaabe community that she is both of and apart from as a half-white, unenrolled member of the tribe. I was then completely caught off guard for the level of horrifying violence that ensued in the narrative, especially State violence and racism, domestic violence, sexual violence, and violence against women. The story infuses more of these violent incidents towards the climax of the novel, and Boulley forces the reader to confront the past and present injustices done towards Indigenous peoples across the United States and especially Indigenous women while still keeping us wrapped in the larger story and demonstrating clearly that Daunis and the other Anishinaabe kwe are also imbued with power and agency and will be greeted and treated holistically on their own terms. It takes a skilled storyteller to deliver both an important because of the issues book and a narratively brilliant book, and Boulley is an expert. I don't think I'll say much more to allow readers to experience Firekeeper's Daughter for themselves without too many spoilers. But this was a really phenomenal, surprising, heartrending read and I could definitely see this breaking out of YA like The Hate U Give did. 5 stars!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Bethany

    Firekeeper's Daughter is a richly layered narrative and a truly fantastic YA debut in the mystery/thriller genre. It follows a biracial Native American teen girl who ends up investigating a string of drug-related deaths in her community. This book got much more intense than I expected and I do recommend checking out the content warnings at the end of the review if needed, but it's such a great story and offers own voices Native representation. There's a lot to unpack here but I'm going to suggest Firekeeper's Daughter is a richly layered narrative and a truly fantastic YA debut in the mystery/thriller genre. It follows a biracial Native American teen girl who ends up investigating a string of drug-related deaths in her community. This book got much more intense than I expected and I do recommend checking out the content warnings at the end of the review if needed, but it's such a great story and offers own voices Native representation. There's a lot to unpack here but I'm going to suggest you check out what these indigenous reviewers had to say: Erin's Library's Review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show... Lisa's Review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show... This story follows Daunis, an 18-year-old unenrolled Ojibwe woman who had been a star hockey player. She is biracial and was the product of a teen pregnancy, born to a wealthy white mother. She is clearly deeply connected to her Native heritage, but still feels like something of an outsider. When people she knows and loves are part of a string of deaths in her community related to meth she decides to assist the FBI as an informant and gets caught up in dangerous activities. This book is rich in the culture, history, and language of Daunis's people and is woven into the narrative in a pivotal way. Daunis is a science nerd, but is also interested in studying the traditional uses of plants and natural medicines among her people. She's determined, smart and brave and I really loved her as a character. You should know however that this book deals with trauma in a host of ways. Grief at the loss of a loved one, exposure to gun violence, untrustworthy, neglectful, or abusive parents, sexual assault, racism and more. It is a mystery plot, but it's really a book about the life and experiences of Native communities. It's a mix of gritty and hopeful. I really loved it and hope we see more from this author in the future. Thank you to Libro.FM for providing an audio review copy! The narrator was fantastic and I enjoyed getting to hear the Ojibwe language spoken. All opinions are my own. Content warnings include drug addiction, use, selling, and manufacture, a scene of sexual assault (on page, not explicitly described), abduction, grief, loss of loved ones, exposure to violence, racism.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Kyra Leseberg (Roots & Reads)

    Daunis Fontaine is the product of a teen pregnancy in a scandalous relationship between a wealthy white female and a tribal member on the Ojibwe reservation. She has never felt she fits in to either world though both sides of her family love her fiercely. Her plan to play hockey and study medicine has gone off track after losing her uncle in what appears to be a drug related death and her grandmother’s recent stroke. Daunis thinks tragedy comes in threes and is bracing for the final, though nothi Daunis Fontaine is the product of a teen pregnancy in a scandalous relationship between a wealthy white female and a tribal member on the Ojibwe reservation. She has never felt she fits in to either world though both sides of her family love her fiercely. Her plan to play hockey and study medicine has gone off track after losing her uncle in what appears to be a drug related death and her grandmother’s recent stroke. Daunis thinks tragedy comes in threes and is bracing for the final, though nothing can prepare her to witness a shocking murder-suicide that catapults her into an FBI investigation. As a confidential informant for the FBI, Daunis investigates possible tribal members involved in a meth operation and seeks answers about her uncle’s death… but is she willing to accept what she finds within her own community? Firekeeper’s Daughter is an ambitious contemporary YA novel and I cannot rave enough about the immersion into indigenous culture with the language and traditions always at the forefront. This is a mix of crime fiction and coming of age with a romance and tackles heavy subject matter including racism, sexual violence, violence against women, addiction, and grief. I struggled at times with the pace and often felt it was trying to encompass too many topics at once (though I understand the relevance and the need to do so), and could’ve done without the romance that felt too forced and convenient. Overall, Firekeeper’s Daughter is intense, complex, and most importantly told in an authentic voice. I highly recommend this book to readers who appreciate contemporary YA, crime fiction/mystery, and diversity. Thanks to Henry Holt & Co. and NetGalley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for my honest review. Firekeeper's Daughter is scheduled for release on March 16, 2021.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Sage Agee

    This was a fun YA mystery thriller that tied in the identity of being Anishinaabe kwe. I think that YA mysteries aren’t totally for me, and found some of the plot points to be too convenient. There is also a fake dating trope in here that I didn’t love, so for those reasons this wasn’t a new favorite. That being said, the characters were interesting, especially allll the grandmas and aunties! The hockey element will excite my Canadian friends for sure, and this was generally a good time. I’m giv This was a fun YA mystery thriller that tied in the identity of being Anishinaabe kwe. I think that YA mysteries aren’t totally for me, and found some of the plot points to be too convenient. There is also a fake dating trope in here that I didn’t love, so for those reasons this wasn’t a new favorite. That being said, the characters were interesting, especially allll the grandmas and aunties! The hockey element will excite my Canadian friends for sure, and this was generally a good time. I’m giving this 5 stars on goodreads because I think the Anishinaabe rep in itself is so important and powerful, especially after seeing ownvoices reviews of this book! Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for this ARC!

  13. 5 out of 5

    birdie

    someone needs to stop me from reading previews on netgalley because im obviously not mentally stable enough to get really invested only for it to end on a major cliffhanger. help. either way, i was not sure if i wanted to read this but now i am. this starts really slow but i kinda enjoyed the build-up. this way when the cliffhanger thing happened i actually cared about the characters and what was happening. i can’t say anything about the accuracy of the representation but i thought it was so intere someone needs to stop me from reading previews on netgalley because im obviously not mentally stable enough to get really invested only for it to end on a major cliffhanger. help. either way, i was not sure if i wanted to read this but now i am. this starts really slow but i kinda enjoyed the build-up. this way when the cliffhanger thing happened i actually cared about the characters and what was happening. i can’t say anything about the accuracy of the representation but i thought it was so interesting to read about it. the author did an excellent job at weaving it through this book without it feeling like a major info dump. my predictions are that this book will continue to be well-written, will become more twisty and that i’ll hopefully be blown away! all i can tell for sure is that i am seriously in need of the full book. blog | bookstagram | more

  14. 5 out of 5

    USOM

    (Disclaimer: I received this book from Netgalley. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.) Firekeeper's Daughter is a book that swept me away. I was pacing myself, minding my own business, until at about 60% when I needed to finish the whole thing in one evening. Oops. There are so many elements I loved about this ownvoices debut like the feelings of Daunis feeling split between the pieces of her family. Boulley tells the story of Daunis feeling like her identity is contro (Disclaimer: I received this book from Netgalley. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.) Firekeeper's Daughter is a book that swept me away. I was pacing myself, minding my own business, until at about 60% when I needed to finish the whole thing in one evening. Oops. There are so many elements I loved about this ownvoices debut like the feelings of Daunis feeling split between the pieces of her family. Boulley tells the story of Daunis feeling like her identity is controlled and defined by other people. The complications in the system while also knowing the truth in our bones. Firekeeper's Daughter doesn't shy away from the trauma of the past. The generations of cruelty, racism, and crimes committed against the Native community. One of my favorite elements is Daunis' family. It's complex, but full of so much tenderness both in our biological relations, and the found family, her community. Boulley tackles the notions of "one of the good ones" as well as questioning how we seek justice. Does it take external help or do we have to root out the problems in our community from the inside? full review: https://utopia-state-of-mind.com/revi...

  15. 4 out of 5

    Dayla

    TW: Drug Abuse, Drug Overdose, Sexual Assault I was both scared and excited when I started this book. Scared because it was being hyped up so much, and excited because it would be a story from a perspective that is so rarely represented in literature (which I think is a big issue that needs to be remedied). But I'm really glad I jumped into FIREKEEPER'S DAUGHTER (blindly, as I do) despite my fear because wow. Just WOW. Pretty sure this is one of my favourites of the year. Boulley does such a beau TW: Drug Abuse, Drug Overdose, Sexual Assault I was both scared and excited when I started this book. Scared because it was being hyped up so much, and excited because it would be a story from a perspective that is so rarely represented in literature (which I think is a big issue that needs to be remedied). But I'm really glad I jumped into FIREKEEPER'S DAUGHTER (blindly, as I do) despite my fear because wow. Just WOW. Pretty sure this is one of my favourites of the year. Boulley does such a beautiful job of creating this heartfelt thriller, while also weaving in parts of her Native American culture. Daunis is the MC of FIREKEEPER'S DAUGHTER and her voice begs to be heard as she navigates the mystery that is haunting her community. After a heartbreaking set of events (both happening before the start of the novel and during the events of the novel), Daunis agrees to go undercover for the FBI as they investigate a string of drug-related deaths. Not only does Boulley do a great job of writing about the prejudices and stereotypes Native Americans face--but she also comments on the racism within the community as well. One of her characters, Daunis's love interest, makes a really good point when he says, "It's hard when being Native means different things depending on who's asking and why." And he then continues with, "[...]It's YOUR identity, but it gets defined or controlled by other people." I think these comments are especially poignant because Daunis herself is half white and half Native American; we read about the racism she's faced as a woman who doesn't look entirely like those in the community. Also, when she mentions the darker skin colour of her uncle and how he is treated. But perhaps one of the most powerful messages I have taken away from Boulley's novel is how important it is to hear Native American women's voices. So many are silenced. There's a heartbreaking scene in this book where we're shown just how a Native woman's voice can be silenced and it is even more heartbreaking when you realize that this isn't entirely fictional--this happens all the time. If you get the opportunity to read this book, I highly recommend reading the Author's Note, where Boulley gives more details on this very real issue. I appreciate Boulley for writing this story for us. Yes, it has a great mystery, some thrilling moments, and romantic instances full of intimacy. But more than that, this book gives us an insight into the culture and traditions. We learn about the importance of family and daily prayers, how important it is to learn for yourself instead of believing stereotypes, and how scary some situations can be when they're completely out of your control. Daunis experiences so much and her strength is, in all honesty, inspiring. There's a scene where she straightens her back and makes a decision that will forever alter her life and it is one of the most badass things I've read this year. I highly recommend this book to all readers (over the age of 15 because of mature content). This is such an important read--one that I will always be happy to have on my shelf. FIREKEEPER'S DAUGHTER isn't just a pretty face (THAT COVER)--it offers a powerful story with a memorable main character. Happy reading!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Daniel Shindler

    Angeline Boulley’s excellent “ The Firekeeper’s Daughter” is classified as a young adult novel. This categorization does not fully capture the scope and complexity of this work. Set in Sault Ste Marie on Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, its narrative immediately engulfs the reader in a panorama of the culture, rituals and traditions of Ojibwe tribe. The fulcrum that drives this novel forward is the characterization of Daunis Fontaine. She is an 18 year old biracial child. Her maternal lineage are desc Angeline Boulley’s excellent “ The Firekeeper’s Daughter” is classified as a young adult novel. This categorization does not fully capture the scope and complexity of this work. Set in Sault Ste Marie on Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, its narrative immediately engulfs the reader in a panorama of the culture, rituals and traditions of Ojibwe tribe. The fulcrum that drives this novel forward is the characterization of Daunis Fontaine. She is an 18 year old biracial child. Her maternal lineage are descendants of the early French Canadian traders and are the wealthiest family in the town. Her deceased father, who had been a rising hockey star, was a member of the Firekeeper family. Firekeepers have the central role of preserving the traditions and ceremonies that bind the community to its founding myths and principles. Nevertheless, Daunis is not an enrolled member of her tribe because her maternal grandparents kept her father’s name off the birth certificate, preventing Daunis’ official acknowledgement by her tribe. The plot is well constructed and chronicles Daunis’ efforts to uncover and avert the devastation caused by meth use in the community. The plotting incorporates tensions between Native and white communities and the role of Federal agencies perpetuating a system that needs reform. We witness the racism, misogyny and sense of exclusion and despair that arise from these forces. However, the plot is truly secondary to the larger themes raised by the images in this book. Ultimately,Daunis’ story and those of her contemporaries involve self discovery and hope.We witness her struggles to define herself and are enriched by the tapestry of spiritual tradition that provides her with emotional sustenance as she navigates the boundaries of societal restrictions and depredations in her quest to become a fully developed person.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Tomes And Textiles

    I-- I'll have a full review. SOON. This was INCREDIBLE. I-- I'll have a full review. SOON. This was INCREDIBLE.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    What a gut punch of a book. Firekeeper's Daughter is not an easy read, but it's well worth the time and emotional investment. Daunis Fontaine has never been fully accepted by either of her communities because of her white mother and Ojibwe father, but she tries her best to honor the traditional ways of her family and be a strong Ojibwe woman. After a traumatic event, Daunis agrees to help the FBI as a confidential informant to discover the people behind the reservation's recent spike in meth. He What a gut punch of a book. Firekeeper's Daughter is not an easy read, but it's well worth the time and emotional investment. Daunis Fontaine has never been fully accepted by either of her communities because of her white mother and Ojibwe father, but she tries her best to honor the traditional ways of her family and be a strong Ojibwe woman. After a traumatic event, Daunis agrees to help the FBI as a confidential informant to discover the people behind the reservation's recent spike in meth. Her investigation will take her places she never expects and force her to confront ideas and situations beyond anything she could have imagined. Firekeeper's Daughter explores Ojibwe culture and modern Native American life, including the harsher realities of being a Native American in the US. The book is peppered with Ojibwe language but always with enough context to figure out what it meant or the English translation which kept it from being overwhelming. There are so many aspects of Native American culture I know nothing about, so it was very interesting to learn the politics of tribal enrollment and per-capita tribal income from Daunis' perspective. Although I wouldn't consider this an "issue" book, it definitely handles some very heavy topics including drugs, racism, and violence against women. They are all handled well within the context of the story, but this is definitely a book for mature teens and up. Overall, I highly recommend Firekeeper's Daughter to mature teens and adults who want a well-written crime story that also explores modern Ojibwe life.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Lucie

    4.5 stars *I received an early audio copy via Libro.FM* CW: drug addiction, drug use, sexual assault/rape, grief This book was so good! Strictly as a mystery thriller it was good. It kept me on my toes, there were so many unexpected twists and turns and I had no idea where it all was taking me (in a good way). Then when you include all the additional layers of the story, I loved this book so much! I did not expect this to deal so heavily with grief. It was written very well and I truly felt for the 4.5 stars *I received an early audio copy via Libro.FM* CW: drug addiction, drug use, sexual assault/rape, grief This book was so good! Strictly as a mystery thriller it was good. It kept me on my toes, there were so many unexpected twists and turns and I had no idea where it all was taking me (in a good way). Then when you include all the additional layers of the story, I loved this book so much! I did not expect this to deal so heavily with grief. It was written very well and I truly felt for the characters. I appreciated the integration of the Ojibwe culture in every aspect of the story. I also really appreciated how close our main character, Daunis, was to her culture, and that we get a peek at what it's like to live in a Native community. I especially loved the connection Daunis had with her elders. Nearly every description of Daunis being around the older members of her community brought tears to my eyes and made me wish I had the ability to be close to my grandparents. Daunis as a character was great to read from. We get to see her struggles with her biracial identity and struggles with acceptance within both her communities. I appreciated her science nerdiness and how that was integrated into the story. I also really liked how hockey was used in the story and seeing her love and passion for the sport. The romance took a while for me to take to, but I appreciated the tension it brought to the story. The one thing I was not a huge fan of is a spoiler and also needs a content warning so it's under a spoiler warning: (view spoiler)[ I felt that the inclusion of Daunis being assualted really came out of left field. I understand that the author wanted to bring attention to the fact that Native women are very likely to experience this and very unlikely to get justice after the fact, but it really seemed to just be put in there to demonstrate this fact rather than drive the story which made me uncomfortable. (hide spoiler)] Overall this is a book that will break your heart and I absolutely recommend it.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Richelle Robinson

    Thank you Amazon Vine for my review copy. First off this cover is EVERYTHING!! Soon as I saw the reveal and read the blurb, I knew I had to read this book. I really enjoyed this story and the twists and turns took me by surprise. I enjoyed learning about the Ojibwe community, the customs, the culture, the history and the struggles. I did listen to the audiobook as I read and it enhanced the reading experience. Gentle reminder: Also if you’re not the intended target for this book please be respec Thank you Amazon Vine for my review copy. First off this cover is EVERYTHING!! Soon as I saw the reveal and read the blurb, I knew I had to read this book. I really enjoyed this story and the twists and turns took me by surprise. I enjoyed learning about the Ojibwe community, the customs, the culture, the history and the struggles. I did listen to the audiobook as I read and it enhanced the reading experience. Gentle reminder: Also if you’re not the intended target for this book please be respectful in your reviews. Saying you don’t like reading books with “other languages” and “couldn’t relate” is offensive because this book was not WRITTEN for you!! These books are called own voices for a reason. *steps off soap box*

  21. 5 out of 5

    Marta Cox

    This review is for an excerpt that truly sets the tone for what is to follow. Daunis in many ways straddles two worlds as her father was a part of the Indigenous people and her mother a white woman descended from French settlers. This story is a revelation as well as a criminal suspense one with deaths, drug use and prejudice. Daunis is at a crossroads in many ways as her uncle recently died, her maternal grandmother has had a stroke and she decides not to go away to university but to stay anoth This review is for an excerpt that truly sets the tone for what is to follow. Daunis in many ways straddles two worlds as her father was a part of the Indigenous people and her mother a white woman descended from French settlers. This story is a revelation as well as a criminal suspense one with deaths, drug use and prejudice. Daunis is at a crossroads in many ways as her uncle recently died, her maternal grandmother has had a stroke and she decides not to go away to university but to stay another year at home. Set against a background of hockey players seeking a better life Daunis stands out as a strong young woman who only wishes to be accepted but sometimes what you wish for can bring terrible consequences. I highly recommend this book and will certainly read more from this author. This voluntary take is of an excerpt I requested from Netgalley and my thoughts and comments are honest and I believe fair

  22. 4 out of 5

    Sabrina

    Mom. She won't survive my death. One bullet will kill us both. 4.5 stars Content warnings: (view spoiler)[addiction and drugs (meth); grief; kidnapping; loss of a loved one; non-graphic sex scene; racism; references to abusive parents; references to police harassment; sexual assault referred to and on-page (non-graphic); sexual references; swearing; violence, injury, death and murder (witnessed) (hide spoiler)] Isabella Star LaBlanc is an absolutely fantastic narrator! Listening to the samp Mom. She won't survive my death. One bullet will kill us both. 4.5 stars Content warnings: (view spoiler)[addiction and drugs (meth); grief; kidnapping; loss of a loved one; non-graphic sex scene; racism; references to abusive parents; references to police harassment; sexual assault referred to and on-page (non-graphic); sexual references; swearing; violence, injury, death and murder (witnessed) (hide spoiler)] Isabella Star LaBlanc is an absolutely fantastic narrator! Listening to the sample on NetGalley hooked me immediately and I requested it right away. LaBlanc conveys the drama and emotions in the text so well, and even managed to make me full on sob over the potatoes I was chopping for lunch. I didn't even have the onion excuse! It was also a great opportunity to hear how Anishinaabemowin is spoken, and I'd definitely like to read the text version to see how the spellings pair with what I heard. Interestingly, there were some bits in the audio that sounded like they'd been re-recorded and then edited in? It didn't really bother me though.This book is really unlike anything I've read before and it defies boundaries of genre and audience age. It's marketed as YA but I think adults of any age could (and should) read it. Based on my experience with mystery-thrillers in the past, I was also (pleasantly) surprised by the level of detail around Daunis' (the MC) relationships: with her family, with her Ojibwe community, their culture and also many wider social issues that they face (especially Native women). In addition to the mystery and tension, this gave the novel a bit of a contemporary (or historical fiction? It's set in 2004) feel too. "Kindness is something that seems small, Daunis, but it's like tossing a pebble into a pond, and the ripples reach further than you thought." The characters were amazing; complex, surprising and felt very real. My favourite character might have been Lily, Daunis' best friend! The antagonists took me completely by surprise and I was both so sad and so furious. Despite the scenarios around being a confidential informant and the romance slightly stretching the imagination, Daunis is such a well-written, realistic character and I enjoyed seeing her develop. I was also pleasantly surprised by the direction the romance went in, though for spoiler avoidance I won't say more. "These aren't 'f**k me' shoes. These are 'f**k you' shoes." Initially there seems to be a bit of a not-like-other-girls, somewhat slut-shamey side to Daunis' perspectives. She calls the girlfriends of hockey players "anglerfish", and I wasn't sure how this was that much better than "puck sluts", the derogatory term used by some of the hockey players themselves and one challenged ferociously by Daunis. She does develop a better understanding of her fellow women eventually, which was nice to see. Another thing I enjoyed was that women of all ages have strong and pivotal roles in Daunis' life and their society. "My girl, some boats are made for the river, and some for the ocean. And there are some that can go anywhere, because they always know the way home." This book really runs the gamut of emotion: grief, fear, rage, hope, love and joy. There are a number of quite upsetting scenes, so I'd definitely suggest checking content warnings beforehand! Boulley has such a wonderful way with words and LaBlanc certainly makes sure you feel it.This was the first Indigenous-authored book that I've read and I hope the start of many more! I'm glad this book seems to be getting buzz - I heard it's been optioned by the Obamas' production company too and I can see this translating very well to screen. And before I go, I have to shout-out the amazing cover design! "Greetings, Creator. I am Red Bear Woman, Bear Clan, from the place of the rapids. Keep our community strong, our women safe, our men whole, our elders laughing, and our children dreaming in the language. Thank you very much for this good life." Thank you to NetGalley and W.F. Howes for an audiobook copy for an honest review.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Jthbooks

    As you’re going to read in the rest of this review, I absolutely adored this book. I thought it was just brilliant. From beginning to end. I will say this book definitely deals with some difficult things so definitely check the trigger warnings for sexual assaults, drugs, grief, death. But I will say they are all dealt with honestly and lots of integrity. The story right from the beginning was extremely intriguing. There were so many ways I could see the story going and it made it exciting to re As you’re going to read in the rest of this review, I absolutely adored this book. I thought it was just brilliant. From beginning to end. I will say this book definitely deals with some difficult things so definitely check the trigger warnings for sexual assaults, drugs, grief, death. But I will say they are all dealt with honestly and lots of integrity. The story right from the beginning was extremely intriguing. There were so many ways I could see the story going and it made it exciting to read. And it was all so detailed. Angeline really has written the perfect balance of character development, romance (yes there’s a romance that I thought was totally believable and sweet), mystery and action. We follow the main character Daunis as she agrees to help the FBI in an an operation of drug related deaths, and she’s a brilliant character. She’s so complex and has such depth. It makes her so interesting to read. I love how smart she is and I love her how proud she was of her tribe and to an Ojibwe women. So great to see this in a YA book and In such a positive way. Loved learning about Native American culture. Obviously it wasn’t this books job it educate me, but it did. But it never felt like an information dump, it showed us what we needed to know, then it showed us profound things. I loved learning about the traditions and some of them are absolutely beautiful. It was just detailed in the best way. It was brilliant own voices representation that we need more of. I absolutely loved the ending to Firekeeper’s Daughter. The momentum and story had been building and the intensity had been growing so I just couldn’t turn the pages fast enough. It was also action packed! It had me on the edge of my seat. I also personally didn’t figure out the mystery. It was just so epic.Listen, if it’s done right, this will make the perfect mini-series. I can see it in my head so clearly. It’s begging to be made. It felt cinematic. Netflix, you need to get on this, but don’t mess it up. This book deserves only the best. I can’t wait for you to read this book and see all the intricacies of it. You won’t regret reading this brilliant young adult book. I’ll look forward to whatever Angeline Boulley writes next.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Sahil Pradhan

    Keep the secret. Live the lie. Earn your truth. This is the motto of Firekeeper's Daughter. This is the motto of every minority person out there: black, brown, Indian—both West and East, Asian, gay, trans, sapphic, everyone. This is the motto of my soul. This is the motto of every closeted queer soul. Do not assume to ignore this as a cautionary tale of being queer in the "new India" or as a tale that tells you that the only acceptable survival to being different is escape or death, it tells you Keep the secret. Live the lie. Earn your truth. This is the motto of Firekeeper's Daughter. This is the motto of every minority person out there: black, brown, Indian—both West and East, Asian, gay, trans, sapphic, everyone. This is the motto of my soul. This is the motto of every closeted queer soul. Do not assume to ignore this as a cautionary tale of being queer in the "new India" or as a tale that tells you that the only acceptable survival to being different is escape or death, it tells you about every minute detail that takes to be different and every tiny rebellion that is to be queer.  Expression as an art form is quite common, but expression as a queer way of talking is quite uncommon, very often conceived to be brain washing and dangerous. To express yourself, you need to hide your face behind layers and layers of paint till your skin is not yours, your face is not like your original, your body is no more your own natural state. Same applies to being a minority too — in this book Indian— you hide your scars and show your stronger side, you plaster your broken bones and smoothen your bruises to only show the glistening skin that everyone lusts for in their  third party "inspirational" or "survival" tale.   But I would say no more. No more hiding behind screens, no more doing stuff in minutes behind closed doors, no more compromising your own love and feelings for a moment of ecstasy, no more victimization. This is what this book has taught me, that to be a minority or different does not mean you have a "new Normal", you live in the same world and as normally as all others do. Your story does not need to be a tale of misery but a story of uprising and a story of your own. Speak with me in pride of your heritage or sexual choices. I am Indian, I am brown, I am a POC, I am queer, I am gay and I live with pride.  Angeline Boulley does not allow you to stop and gasp for breath. You have to run, just like the protagonist Daunis does every morning. You have to run, scratch through the patriarchal world and evolve victorious, scream out of your lungs all the anger you have within. Even within that you have to stabilise, slow down your pace, learn ways to run more not fast: for life does not care about the pace of your work, but the fruitfulness and longevity of it.  The triumph of Boulley's debut novel is that it straps you to your seat and leaves you on your own to ride the rollercoaster for yourself, where you reach the cliff of excitement and then fall into the grief and connect and resonate with the whole cast of characters that Angeline has so vividly imagined.  Do not mistake and specify this book under a single genre, this is not purely YA, this is not even pure thriller, not even a pure literary fiction. This is an amalgamation, a concoction, sometimes a faraggo of all of these. Introduce into a pot — minority representation, scenic climax scenes whose intensity would cannon you off a clip to infinity, scenes so emotional you almost break down and stare into nothingness to stabilise your mind out of the grief— Firekeeper's Daughter would be born.  Do not look out for beauty in prose in here; see, wait and watch for ferocity of craft. Never would you have seen such badass women revolving the world and communities around their fingers through their choices. Here is Firekeeper's Daughter, with all her raging glory: the sheering currents of a novel's emotions, the incredible pace and thrill-thrum of a thriller and the pull and angst of a feminist or minority representation literature. 

  25. 4 out of 5

    Ashley

    Star Rating: —> 4.5 Stars Holy freaking WOW! This was SO INTENSE & SO GOOD! RTC, I seriously need some time to think. Just holy cow. All the freakin' cowssssss! THIS WAS FANTASTIC! What a daring, brave, amazing NAIL BITER of a debut that really, truly, had me glued from page one! INCREDIBLEEEEE! Star Rating: —> 4.5 Stars Holy freaking WOW! This was SO INTENSE & SO GOOD! RTC, I seriously need some time to think. Just holy cow. All the freakin' cowssssss! THIS WAS FANTASTIC! What a daring, brave, amazing NAIL BITER of a debut that really, truly, had me glued from page one! INCREDIBLEEEEE!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Kate (GirlReading)

    3.5* A powerful and gut-wrenching mystery that expertly explores topics such as addiction, grief, sexual assault, abuse and the realities of life as a Native teen, with raw honesty. TW: rape, sexual assault, drug overdose, addiction, abuse

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jordan

    “It’s hard to explain what it’s like being so connected to everyone and everything here...yet feeling that no one ever sees the whole me.” Rating: Really Enjoyed It, Translates to 4 Stars Firekeeper’s Daughter is an Own Voices YA Thriller by debut author Angeline Boulley. It follows the story of Daunis, an unenrolled, biracial member of the local tribe who is putting her big dreams for the future on hold to be at home for her mother as they go through a difficult time. Daunis soon finds herself in “It’s hard to explain what it’s like being so connected to everyone and everything here...yet feeling that no one ever sees the whole me.” Rating: Really Enjoyed It, Translates to 4 Stars Firekeeper’s Daughter is an Own Voices YA Thriller by debut author Angeline Boulley. It follows the story of Daunis, an unenrolled, biracial member of the local tribe who is putting her big dreams for the future on hold to be at home for her mother as they go through a difficult time. Daunis soon finds herself in the center of a federal investigation after she witnesses a murder that turns her life upside down. She must choose how to proceed in order to protect both herself and her community as she gets closer and closer to the truth of what is really going on. Since this is a mystery/thriller, I don’t want to say much more than that as far as synopsis, but I absolutely loved Daunis. I was rooting for her from the very beginning and felt like the author really succeeded at bringing her to life. I cared about what she cared about and felt her triumph and her anguish. Boulley’s depiction of the community was incredible as well. I entered an all-new culture through this story and really felt like I could visualize the world she depicted. I felt like she did an excellent job in giving words to her depiction of life as a biracial teenager, growing up never fully belonging to either community. The several Own Voices reviews that I have seen were full of praise for this book as well, so I feel confident in saying that the author did an excellent job portraying that experience as well. My heart broke for Daunis and all the struggles that she and her family and friends endured, especially the casually cruelty she documented with Bigotry Bingo. Overall, I had no complaints with this book. It was rather heavy at times due to the material that it covered, but I think that the drugs, addiction, and the violence against women was dealt with in a way that was not overdone. It is something that is present but not self-gratifying. I feel like this is a necessary book to be circulating in the YA contemporary world and is something that is long overdue. I hope to see more books like this in the future. Thank you to Netgalley and Macmillan Children's Publishing Group for the advance copy in return for an honest review. This did not influence my opinion. Firekeeper’s Daughter releases on March 16, 2021.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Mary (bookstorevibe)

    Firekeeper’s Daughter had me intrigued from the beginning. With unexpected twists and and a great buildup to the final reveal, it kept me on my toes. The writing flowed easily and some powerful lines really made me pause. I do however think that, besides the mystery, the characters and the community were the strongest part of the story. Daunis is such a well-rounded character and it felt like I really got to know her personality, her dreams and her fears. She’s intelligent and brave and she also Firekeeper’s Daughter had me intrigued from the beginning. With unexpected twists and and a great buildup to the final reveal, it kept me on my toes. The writing flowed easily and some powerful lines really made me pause. I do however think that, besides the mystery, the characters and the community were the strongest part of the story. Daunis is such a well-rounded character and it felt like I really got to know her personality, her dreams and her fears. She’s intelligent and brave and she also had great character development. I especially loved learning about Daunis’ experiences as a biracial Native teen. Seeing the different relationships with her white mother’s side of the family on one hand and the Ojibwe community on the other hand was so interesting. Daunis feels torn between those two worlds and like she doesn’t really fit into either, and I really liked how she wanted to be a part of both but still saw the flaws in both as well. Firekeeper’s Daughter has a quite big cast of characters without being confusing and all of the different community members and their different experiences added a lot to the story. I also really enjoyed that so many Ojibwe words were included as well as traditions and ceremonies. There were so many things that I hadn’t known about before and it really showed me that I have to educate myself more. Firekeeper’s Daughter deals with so many different topics – most of them are very hard-hitting but also incredibly important. I especially thought that Angeline Boulley wrote about grief in a very realistic way and that she handled this difficult topic very well. Drugs, addiction, murder, sexual assault and more – the trigger warning list is definitely quite long and it also leads to the main reason why this wasn’t quite a 5-star-read for me. I just thought that some themes could’ve been addressed in more depth. The romance actually played a bigger role than I had expected and I did quite enjoy it, but with character development and the mystery and general talk about the community, there just wasn’t enough page time left for some topics that I personally think were touched on too briefly. However, I still highly recommend checking out Firekeeper’s Daughter if you’re looking for a gripping book that deals with heavy topics while also sharing a look into a community that is still very rarely represented in literature. Firekeeper’s Daughter is a suspenseful YA thriller that will stay with me for a long time. 4.25/5⭐️

  29. 5 out of 5

    Kristi

    Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley is such a powerful and impactful book. It’s centered on Daunis Fontaine, an 18-year-old biracial girl living in two worlds. On one side, she is Ojibwe, although unenrolled and revels in the traditions of her native culture and on the other she is French Canadian, a white girl with privileges that many within her Anishinaabe family and tribe don’t have. When a murder fueled by a new type of methamphetamine happens within Daunis’s inner circle, she realize Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley is such a powerful and impactful book. It’s centered on Daunis Fontaine, an 18-year-old biracial girl living in two worlds. On one side, she is Ojibwe, although unenrolled and revels in the traditions of her native culture and on the other she is French Canadian, a white girl with privileges that many within her Anishinaabe family and tribe don’t have. When a murder fueled by a new type of methamphetamine happens within Daunis’s inner circle, she realizes that the drug problem within her community runs deeper than she could’ve imagined and much closer to home. Agreeing to assist the FBI, Daunis ventures into the dark nature of the drug trade. There’s a lot to love about this book; first, the depth of cultural history within the Anishinaabe tribe. It was a joy to listen to and learn so much about the Ojibwe community. Second, the strength of women supporting women; the author writes about the beauty of female friendship and relationships, mother to daughter, aunt to niece, friend to friend. There’s also the heart wrenching issue of racism and violence against the indigenous community, past and present. The story is well-plotted and beautifully scripted, there is a mystery at heart and the author skillfully takes you through Daunis’s inner struggles with her need to protect her community and just what she’s willing to sacrifice. The narrator Isabella Star LaBlanc was phenomenal and I enjoyed her smooth narrative, her ability to seamlessly switch characters and her lilting tone when speaking the indigenous language. Firekeeper’s Daughter takes place in my state of Michigan and it made this already fantastic story that much better when the author took me to some beloved places in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Five stars for this cross-genre gem and my thanks to Libro FM, Macmillan Audio and Henry Holt & Co. for gifting me an ALC.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Amy | Foxy Blogs

    I'm calling this now - this book will be in the running for Goodreads Debut Novel of the Year award that happens later this year. But I'll take it a step further and say that it wins the award this year! Well done, Ms. Boulley!! Another exciting thing about this book is The Obamas’ Higher Ground production company has opted to turn this book into a Netflix series. I'm excited to see this come to our tv screens. From the author, "I made it very clear to every potential partner that I spoke with th I'm calling this now - this book will be in the running for Goodreads Debut Novel of the Year award that happens later this year. But I'll take it a step further and say that it wins the award this year! Well done, Ms. Boulley!! Another exciting thing about this book is The Obamas’ Higher Ground production company has opted to turn this book into a Netflix series. I'm excited to see this come to our tv screens. From the author, "I made it very clear to every potential partner that I spoke with that it was as important for me that there’d be native talent not only in front of the camera but behind the camera, in the writer’s room, and at every stage of production. They were just completely on board all the way and already had ideas about that.” Daunis is an 18-year-old who unexpectedly is a witness to her best friend's murder. That incident gets the ball rolling on Daunis going undercover to help her community. FIREKEEPER'S DAUGHTER ● Native Americans ● mystery / thriller ● murder ● betrayal ● #ownvoices ● standalone READ THIS BOOKAudiobook source: Library/Overdrive Narrator: Isabella Star LaBlanc Length: 14H 13M

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