Teen Book Review Blog

Hiba's Review of "Elatsoe" by Darcie Little Badger

Review by Hiba

April 15, 2021


5 stars of 5

Elatsoe by Darcie Little Badger

Elatsoe by Darcie Little Badger is an amazing mix of fantasy, mystery, and paranormal fiction.  This magical novel focuses on Elatsoe who is a young teen girl with origins from the Apache tribe.  Elatsoe’s world is filled with monsters, ghosts, magic, legends of heroes, and a multitude of abilities.  It is quite similar to our world except for these magical entities and capabilities.  

Being an indigeneous person, Elatsoe has the ability to raise the dead as ghosts.  Initially, Elatsoe had only used this ability to wake her dog; however, later on Elatsoe was required to use her power to get justice for the death of her beloved cousin.  Although Elatsoe’s cousin’s death was ruled as an accident, Elatsoe knew there was more to it as she had dreamed of him asking her to protect his family from a man named Abe Allerton.  With the support and help of her parents and friends, Elatsoe began to research and investigate Abe Allerton and the town where her cousin was killed.  As Elatsoe continued her investigation and began to question the strange history of her cousin’s town, Willowbee, she unraveled many of the hidden gruesome secrets of this seemingly ideal town which gave her a much greater cause to fight for.

In addition to this plot with many twists, Elatsoe’s adventurous personality made the book even more interesting.  Her great love for her cousin and deep hatred for those who kill without reason made her steadfast in her mission to get justice.  In addition to this, Elatsoe also worked hard to find the truth, despite the town’s great efforts to hide it from her.  Although she encountered many dead ends, she did not allow herself to become discouraged and was strong in her motivation.  The dark spells and magic of the town made Elatsoe’s journey extremely dangerous; however, this did not keep her from fighting for what is right.  Although Elatsoe’s bravery was necessary to get the truth, her lack of fear and willingness to take risks put her in danger many times.  Aside from this, Elatsoe also grew from being stubbornly solo to accepting others’ help.  Overall, Elatsoe’s personality and development throughout the story made it more enjoyable!

If looking for a book with both mystery and fantasy, this book is perfect for you!  Elatsoe’s magical and risky mission made an interesting read, and it completely gripped me. The many fantasy characters such as vampires, ghosts, fairies, and wizards made this story wondrous; however, sometimes it was a bit difficult to be able to keep track of all the abilities each character had.  In addition, Elatsoe’s world is quite similar to ours, so some of its history is also the truth.  Although the town Willowbee does not exist, some of the other historical information given in the book such as the expulsion of the Natives were true.  Elatsoe was truly exciting to read, and its plot had me on the edge of my seat the entire time!

Tags: book review YA fiction indigenous peoples native americans Darcie Little Badger Elatsoe fantasy magic

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