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Race to the Sun

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Lately, seventh grader Nizhoni Begay has been able to detect monsters, like that man in the fancy suit who was in the bleachers at her basketball game. Turns out he's Mr. Charles, her dad's new boss at the oil and gas company, and he's alarmingly interested in Nizhoni and her brother, Mac, their Navajo heritage, and the legend of the Hero Twins. Nizhoni knows he's a Lately, seventh grader Nizhoni Begay has been able to detect monsters, like that man in the fancy suit who was in the bleachers at her basketball game. Turns out he's Mr. Charles, her dad's new boss at the oil and gas company, and he's alarmingly interested in Nizhoni and her brother, Mac, their Navajo heritage, and the legend of the Hero Twins. Nizhoni knows he's a threat, but her father won't believe her. When Dad disappears the next day, leaving behind a message that says "Run!", the siblings and Nizhoni's best friend, Davery, are thrust into a rescue mission that can only be accomplished with the help of Diné Holy People, all disguised as quirky characters. Their aid will come at a price: the kids must pass a series of trials in which it seems like nature itself is out to kill them. If Nizhoni, Mac, and Davery can reach the House of the Sun, they will be outfitted with what they need to defeat the ancient monsters Mr. Charles has unleashed. But it will take more than weapons for Nizhoni to become the hero she was destined to be . . . Timeless themes such as the importance of family and respect for the land resonate in this funny, fast-paced, and exciting quest adventure set in the American Southwest.


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Lately, seventh grader Nizhoni Begay has been able to detect monsters, like that man in the fancy suit who was in the bleachers at her basketball game. Turns out he's Mr. Charles, her dad's new boss at the oil and gas company, and he's alarmingly interested in Nizhoni and her brother, Mac, their Navajo heritage, and the legend of the Hero Twins. Nizhoni knows he's a Lately, seventh grader Nizhoni Begay has been able to detect monsters, like that man in the fancy suit who was in the bleachers at her basketball game. Turns out he's Mr. Charles, her dad's new boss at the oil and gas company, and he's alarmingly interested in Nizhoni and her brother, Mac, their Navajo heritage, and the legend of the Hero Twins. Nizhoni knows he's a threat, but her father won't believe her. When Dad disappears the next day, leaving behind a message that says "Run!", the siblings and Nizhoni's best friend, Davery, are thrust into a rescue mission that can only be accomplished with the help of Diné Holy People, all disguised as quirky characters. Their aid will come at a price: the kids must pass a series of trials in which it seems like nature itself is out to kill them. If Nizhoni, Mac, and Davery can reach the House of the Sun, they will be outfitted with what they need to defeat the ancient monsters Mr. Charles has unleashed. But it will take more than weapons for Nizhoni to become the hero she was destined to be . . . Timeless themes such as the importance of family and respect for the land resonate in this funny, fast-paced, and exciting quest adventure set in the American Southwest.

30 review for Race to the Sun

  1. 5 out of 5

    Rick Riordan

    Changing Woman. Rock Crystal Boy. The Glittering World. The Hero Twins. If those names dont ring a bell, youve been missing out on some of the coolest mythology anywhere. (And as always, when I use the term myth, I use it in its first and most basic sense: a traditional story about gods and heroes, not in its later, more secondary connotation as something false or made up.) But dont worry. Thanks to Rebecca Roanhorse and Race to the Sun, youre about to plunge headfirst into the fabulous, scary, Changing Woman. Rock Crystal Boy. The Glittering World. The Hero Twins. If those names don’t ring a bell, you’ve been missing out on some of the coolest mythology anywhere. (And as always, when I use the term myth, I use it in its first and most basic sense: a traditional story about gods and heroes, not in its later, more secondary connotation as something false or made up.) But don’t worry. Thanks to Rebecca Roanhorse and Race to the Sun, you’re about to plunge headfirst into the fabulous, scary, wonderful story-world of the Diné, also called the Navajo. Even if you already know something about traditional Navajo tales, you are going squee with delight, because you have never experienced them like this before. Meet Nizhoni Begay. (Her first name is pronounced Ni-jho-knee. It means ‘beauty.’) In many ways, she’s a typical New Mexico seventh grader. She just wants to be good at something, to get some respect at school. Unfortunately, nothing works. Her bid for internet fame is a fail. Her chance to become a sports superstar ends with a basketball in the face. She can barely manage to hang on to her one good friend Davery, who runs the lunchtime Ancestor Club in the library, and try to protect her artsy younger brother Mac from getting beat up by school bullies. As if that wasn’t enough, Nizhoni has another small issue. Recently she’s started seeing monsters. Nobody else seems to notice, but Nizhoni is pretty sure that even Mr. Charles, the rich guy who is offering Nizhoni’s dad a new job in Oklahoma, is not human. Worse, it seems that Mr. Charles has sought out the Begay family because he considers Nizhoni some kind of threat . . . I love this story, and not just because it’s a page-turning, funny, brilliant read. The point of Rick Riordan Presents is to publish and promote great voices from cultures that have been too often marginalized or erased by mainstream culture. No one has suffered more from this than Native and Indigenous peoples. As Rebecca says in her author’s note, it’s important for Native kids to be able to see themselves in fiction, but it’s equally important for non-Native kids to read about Native characters who aren’t just a collection of stereotypes or long-dead figures from the past. Native cultures are alive and well and vibrant. Their stories can tell you about the original American gods and heroes, those who inhabited and embodied this land for thousands of years before the Europeans brought over their interloping Zeuses and Aphrodites and what-have-yous. I’ll tell you something I don’t normally share. Piper McLean, the half-Cherokee character in The Heroes of Olympus series, was inspired by conversations I had with Native kids during school visits, of which I did hundreds over the years. They asked me repeatedly whether I could add a Native hero to Percy Jackson’s world. They wanted to see themselves reflected at Camp Half-Blood, because they simply never saw themselves in popular kids’ books. Piper was my way of saying, “Absolutely! I see you. I value you. You can be part of my world anytime!” But my perspective is not a Native perspective. It was one thing to include Piper as part of the heroic ensemble, to share Percy Jackson’s world with kids from all backgrounds and send a message that heroes can come from all sorts of places. It would be quite another thing to write entirely from a Native protagonist’s point-of-view, about the mythology of his or her own culture. That sort of story needed to come from a Native writer, and I yearned to find stories like that and put them into the hands of young readers, Native and non-Native alike. There are so many wonderful Indigenous mythologies. They deserve to be read, shared and spotlighted. For Native kids, seeing themselves reflected in books is critical. Seeing themselves reflected in the authors who create those books is exponentially more empowering. I am thrilled that Rebecca Roanhorse agreed to write Race to the Sun for Rick Riordan Presents. It is a much-needed addition to children’s fiction, and I hope it’s the first of many! For all kids, reading about other cultures’ mythologies is a way to expand their imagination and their empathy. There’s an old Czech proverb: Learn a new language, gain a new soul. Mythology is similar. The traditional sacred stories of every culture can offer us a new window onto the world – a new way of seeing and understanding. As a bonus, mythology is wildly entertaining! But I’ve said enough. I’ll let Nizhoni Begay take it from here. Welcome to the Dinétah. Keep your hands and feet inside the novel at all times, or some monster might bite them off. If you’re really good, maybe the Begay family will take you to the Pasta Palace afterward for some macaravioli!

  2. 5 out of 5

    megs_bookrack

    **3.5-stars rounded up** When Nizhoni Begay notices a mysterious man in the bleachers at her Junior High basketball game, she can't take her eyes off him. So much so, she misses the game winning shot! The thing is, she knows instinctively that this man is a monster in disguise, a gift she has recently discovered she has. After the game, she learns the monster is her Dad's new boss, Mr. Charles, and he is very interested in Nizhoni and her little brother, Mac. Nizhoni calls out Mr. Charles to her **3.5-stars rounded up** When Nizhoni Begay notices a mysterious man in the bleachers at her Junior High basketball game, she can't take her eyes off him. So much so, she misses the game winning shot! The thing is, she knows instinctively that this man is a monster in disguise, a gift she has recently discovered she has. After the game, she learns the monster is her Dad's new boss, Mr. Charles, and he is very interested in Nizhoni and her little brother, Mac. Nizhoni calls out Mr. Charles to her Dad, who doesn't believe her. In fact, he seems disappointed in her outburst, but when Mr. Begay ends up getting kidnapped by Mr. Charles and his cronies, it is up to Nizhoni to save him! She has always wanted to be a hero and this is her chance. Along with her best friend, Davery, and her little brother, Mac, they set out on a quest to rescue Mr. Begay and stop Mr. Charles from releasing a horde of ancient monsters upon the world. Working off the Navajo legend of the Hero Twins, this adventurous Middle Grade novel tackles facing our fears and the importance of family. While it started out a little slow for me, once the kids finally got into the quest, meeting the Spider Woman and finding the Rainbow Road, I really started to enjoy it. I didn't find this quite as humorous as earlier releases by this imprint, but that is really personal taste more than an issue with the book itself. Overall, this is a great story for Middle Grade readers. I loved learning more about the legends of the Navajo culture and if more books release in this series, I would absolutely read them. Nizhoni and Davery's friendship was so pure and I loved little Mac as well! Thank you so much to the publisher, Disney Book Group, as well as Rick Riordan Presents, for providing me with an early copy of this to read and review. I have enjoyed so many of the books in this imprint and this one is no exception!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Bethany

    Actual Rating: 4.5 stars If you are looking for a fun, middle grade fantasy adventure with monsters, mythology, and #ownvoices Native American representation, then look no further! Race to the Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse is solidly written for her target audience, so don't expect this to be subtextually for adults as well. That said, it's fun, fast-paced, and is jam-packed with Navajo mythology. On an entertaining note- the "big bad" of the story is a monster disguised as a businessman who owns an Actual Rating: 4.5 stars If you are looking for a fun, middle grade fantasy adventure with monsters, mythology, and #ownvoices Native American representation, then look no further! Race to the Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse is solidly written for her target audience, so don't expect this to be subtextually for adults as well. That said, it's fun, fast-paced, and is jam-packed with Navajo mythology. On an entertaining note- the "big bad" of the story is a monster disguised as a businessman who owns an oil and gas company engaged in fracking. I found that to be kind of funny, but there was kind of a missed opportunity to explain what fracking is and the environmental impact of it to a young audience who might not be familiar with the particulars. (note that I did read an advance copy of this book, so that may be added to the final copy) Nizhoni Begay is a seventh-grader with the ability to detect monsters. When her dad's potential new boss comes to visit, she can tell that he is actually a monster and learns of his plans to co-opt Nizhoni and her brother for nefarious uses of their power. When their dad is kidnapped, Nizhoni, her brother Mac, and her best friend Davery (a Afro-Native boy with an amazing memory) embark on a quest to become monster hunters, defeat the enemy, and save dad. Along the way, they encounter many characters from mythology including Spider Woman and guardians of four holy mountains. It is a great blend of ancient mythology with modern technology. The book addresses things like bullying, racism, homophobia, and more. There are some content warnings for instances of those things, plus violence and maternal abandonment. Overall, I really enjoyed this book and think it will be fantastic for young readers. I received an advance copy of this book for review. All opinions are my own.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Mila

    This was a really fun story that also opened up a whole new world of Navajo mythology to me. I liked all the main characters, especially Nizhoni. I only wish the book was longer because the finale was quite rushed, in my opinion. But I still enjoyed this novel a lot!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Lata

    This was fun, and though I kept thinking as I was reading that Nizhoni Begay was was an ancestor of Maggie Hoskie (of Rebecsa Roanhorse's The Sixth World series) because of her monster-related abilities. Nizhoni Begay wants to be famous and adored, to make up for her father's neglect, which is probably due to his feelings about her missing mother. Nizhoni's dearest wish is to be a hero. Her life takes a left turn when she sees a monster one day in the stands at her basketball game, and soon after This was fun, and though I kept thinking as I was reading that Nizhoni Begay was was an ancestor of Maggie Hoskie (of Rebecsa Roanhorse's The Sixth World series) because of her monster-related abilities. Nizhoni Begay wants to be famous and adored, to make up for her father's neglect, which is probably due to his feelings about her missing mother. Nizhoni's dearest wish is to be a hero. Her life takes a left turn when she sees a monster one day in the stands at her basketball game, and soon after everything changes. She, along with her younger brother Mac and her best friend Davery, have to go an a quest to save her father. They encounter all sorts of gods and spirits along the way, and fight countless monsters. Nizhoni discovers she can not only see monsters, but can fight them really well. She also discovers some important things about herself and her family. Nizhoni starts out the story a little shallow and with some anger management issues, and by the end of this book is so much wiser, happier and literally stronger. Roanhorse has crafted a funny story full of friendship, kindness, adventure, and quite frankly, some fun punching. I really hope Nizhoni, Davery and Mac get to go on more adventures, Rebecca Roanhorse!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Melanie Brinkman

    We are heroes, but maybe we just don't know it yet. Nizhoni is just your normal 7th grader. But lately shes started seeing monsters, like the one attending her basketball game, like the one that turns out to be Mr. Charles, her dad's potential boss at the oil and gas company. He's strangely interested in her family, their Navajo heritage, and the legend of the Hero Twins. Despite her best attempts to warn him, Nizhoni's father won't believe his boss is a threat. When her dad disappears the next We are heroes, but maybe we just don't know it yet. Nizhoni is just your normal 7th grader. But lately shes started seeing monsters, like the one attending her basketball game, like the one that turns out to be Mr. Charles, her dad's potential boss at the oil and gas company. He's strangely interested in her family, their Navajo heritage, and the legend of the Hero Twins. Despite her best attempts to warn him, Nizhoni's father won't believe his boss is a threat. When her dad disappears the next day, he leaves a message that sends Nizhoni, her brother Mac, and her best friend Davery on a rescue mission that can only be accomplished with the help of the Diné Holy People. The kids must go through a series of trials fraught with killer nature to reach the House of the Sun. Can Nizhoni defeat Mr. Charles's monsters and save her father? A story that proves weapons are not the only things that defeat monsters. A tale of heart, heritage, and humor. Trigger warning for injury, racism, and homophobia. Passionately persistent, Nizhoni was determined to be noticed. The Diné girl was often scared, and prone to mistakes, but the courageous heart always kept moving forward. Maybe she didn't become a hero on the basketball court, but she certainly proved herself in trials against nefarious nature and by defeating nasty bullies and monsters alike. However, it was beautiful to watch her realize she was already a hero for just being her brave, funny, and caring self. From her artsy, impulsive little brother to her steadfast, knowledge loving best friend, from a talking "stuffed" horned lizard to the Diné Holy People, Nizhoni interacted with many souls on her quest to reach the House of Sun. Siblings do as siblings do, bickering and bantering in equal measure, and the bond between Nizhoni and Mac was fiercely precious. She would do anything for her brother. Bookish and therefore Nizhoni through thick and thin, Davery was a friend dreams are made of. Helpful Mr. Yazzie was a delightfully wise surprise from the moment the horned lizard started talking. Unique, I loved how each of the Diné Holy People were given their own personalities that quirkly, respectfully showed off their individual powers and what they stood for. The well drawn cast was gobs of fun to get to know. Run! From there it's not long before you're racing along side Nizhoni, Mac, and Davery on an action-packed adventure. Creatively introducing the Hero Twins, Spider Woman, Rock Crystal Boy, the Rainbow Road, and more, Race the Sun was a fun, easy way to start learning about Navajo mythology. A story of family, loyalty, reconnecting to your roots, and discovering the bravery that lies inside of you, it was impossible to stop turning the pages. Understated yet not so understatedly, it also talked about respecting the environment and the harms of oil pipelines. Humorously sweet and heartbreakingly tender, Rebecca Roanhorse's middle grade debut sprung to life with legends and stories of a people we hear far too little about. Just like the rest of the fantastic books Rick Riordan Presents publishes, this book made my heart sing. It gives readers of all ages the important opportunity to hear from marginalized voices. I'm crossing my fingers for a sequel, because I adored every moment I spent in Nizhoni's world. Make sure you race to get your hands on this book.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Samm | Sassenach the Book Wizard

    Okay so full disclosure that I am not an unbiased reviewer. I literally spend my days trying to find books for unserved Indigenous communities AND OH MY GOD THERE IS LIKE NOTHING OUT THERE! Now I don't live anywhere near a Navajo territory but having a book I can take to the communities I do serve with a power-wielding bad-ass Indigenous girl fighting against some evil dude trying to destroy the environment...is amazing! She's incredibly relatable and I love her family's backstory. Rep: Navajo Okay so full disclosure that I am not an unbiased reviewer. I literally spend my days trying to find books for unserved Indigenous communities AND OH MY GOD THERE IS LIKE NOTHING OUT THERE! Now I don't live anywhere near a Navajo territory but having a book I can take to the communities I do serve with a power-wielding bad-ass Indigenous girl fighting against some evil dude trying to destroy the environment...is amazing! She's incredibly relatable and I love her family's backstory. Rep: Navajo rep, Indigenous own voices

  8. 5 out of 5

    Brigid

    Reviewed at the Alliterates: Race to the Sun review Who you are is always enough.  Nizhoni is in love with spaghetti, her Frank Waln shirt, and she has an incurable desire to be internet famous. Roanhorse repeatedly makes it known that she wants books for her daughter to relate to when she grows up. This book is for right now. Roanhorse is Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo, African-American and Diné-in-law. Her daughter is Diné and part of that community. This book is an act of love for her daughter. It Reviewed at the Alliterates: Race to the Sun review “Who you are is always enough.”  Nizhoni is in love with spaghetti, her Frank Waln shirt, and she has an incurable desire to be internet famous. Roanhorse repeatedly makes it known that she wants books for her daughter to relate to when she grows up. This book is for right now. Roanhorse is Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo, African-American and Diné-in-law. Her daughter is Diné and part of that community. This book is an act of love for her daughter. It encourages her daughter to love her culture, her language, beliefs, and values. Having stories where Diné girls get to be heroes in a literary tradition that only ever had magical white kids as heroes is important for both Roanhorse, her daughter, and other native kids. One of the reasons Roanhorse shows the reader the difference between indigenous ideas and western ones is because she wants native kids, specifically Diné kids, to have an accessible resource. She wants kids to relate to their culture through kids like Nizhoni and Davery so they can love and learn more about their culture. What separates this book from other kids books is Roanhorse makes it entirely about kids and their emotions. She prioritizes how a kid would respond versus how an adult would want a kid to respond. Nizhoni reacts realistically. She’s not some fantasized version adults have about kids holding in all their emotions. Roanhorse encourages truthful experiences for kids rather than ones designed to talk down to children. Her books are always political and this one is no different.   Who are the police going to believe? Some random brown kid, or a famous executive with his blond hair and a fancy suit that reeks of money? Kids books should be political. In Race To the Sun, the politics is in a monster’s ability to shapeshift into a rich white capitalist oil tycoon.   He and his kind will not be happy until they have destroyed the land.    This line strikes me as a reference to the billionaires destruction of the land and the power they’re given in government. Roanhorse knows this power stretches far and wide. But she does so in a way kids can understand more easily. She does it through other kids and she does it through indigenous stories. Roanhorse is always genius at picking apart what colonialism does to people and what decolonization looks like in indigenous communities. She’s able to show us how this takes many forms and appears in ways we wouldn’t expect.  This is what we see when Nizhoni, Mac and Davery go through the trials in order to receive their hero weapons. Just like indigenous people in the past used traditional stories for what they experienced, contemporary indigenous writers and artists use stories to express modern day readers what their people are experiencing now.   “These children are different from their ancestors. Just as the trials changed to fit Nizhoni’s imagination, so must the weapons adapt. The ways of the Diné are not static but alive and ever-changing.”  Roanhorse makes the emphasis that the way indigenous peoples survived and adapted in this modern world is part of their cultures. These aspects that became part of their histories is now part of their traditional ways. Frybread is not traditional, but there’s no shame in it. Your ancestors created food out of nothing, like magic.    What their ancestors experienced may always be a part of them but colonialism changes and transforms much like Mr. Charles does. Indigenous people adapt and continue to survive in response to colonialism. Colonialist ideas of what is indigenous art and what isn’t is brilliantly threaded through the book. Davery and other indigenous kids gather together for an after school group called ‘Ancestors Club.’ Roanhorse describes him putting together cardboard cutouts of a hogan and a popsicle stick corral. He has a sign titled ‘traditional Diné (aka Navajo) house’. This is Roanhorse basically telling us that putting labels on what is indigenous art and what isn’t is a colonial idea. Indigenous people making art is indigenous art. Anyways. This book made me cry and scream and wrecked me to little bits. I want to know more about the Haud Squad. I want to see more landscapes and relationships. I’m especially attached to the complicated relationship Nizhoni has to her family members. It’s a gorgeous love letter from a mother to her daughter. I loved it so very much. This book should be in every library, in every school, in every kid’s hand, especially indigenous kids. I want this book to break records. A note to the publisher:   I would recommend in the future that non-native people be more attentive to the letters in the books. Riordan’s intent may have been to give a play on Neil Gaiman’s book American Gods. However, it’s important for those of us that are non-native to be careful of the influence our words may have on others. Native Americans are not original to America because America was forced on them. This land wasn’t called America. This land had people of different cultures who spoke many different languages. Suggesting any originality to the idea of America is offensive because it forgets what America did to indigenous peoples here. This should not be assumed to be Roanhorse’s responsibility 1. this was not her letter and 2. she is not responsible for other people’s words (especially when the possibility of having a children’s book with indigenous rep is so needed). This note is entirely on the publisher, not the author. It would have been interesting if they had asked Charlie Amáyá Scott (who was a cultural consultant for this book) to write the letter instead. That would have been more impactful.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Wolf

    What fun! Race to the Sun is the middle grade childrens adventure novel that we absolutely needed! Written by the talented Rebecca Roanhorse, Race to the Sun uses Navajo mythology in an epic quest full of danger and trials. Main characer Nizhoni, a 7th grader who wants to be special, finds herself able to sense monsters a gift which becomes crucial when her father goes missing. Accompanied by younger brother Mac and best friend Davery, these three tweens must navigate the American Southwest What fun! Race to the Sun is the middle grade children’s adventure novel that we absolutely needed! Written by the talented Rebecca Roanhorse, Race to the Sun uses Navajo mythology in an epic quest full of danger and trials. Main characer Nizhoni, a 7th grader who wants to be special, finds herself able to sense monsters — a gift which becomes crucial when her father goes missing. Accompanied by younger brother Mac and best friend Davery, these three tweens must navigate the American Southwest through landmarks both real and fantastical, facing down monsters and accepting assistance from legendary characters such as Spider Woman, Yellow Corn Girl, and the Sun himself. Along the way, the children learn lessons about bravery, sacrifice, loyalty, and the importance of their roots and their connection to their people’s past. (It’s also an understated but quite effective premise to have the bad guy being the head of an oil company that wants to exploit ancestral clan powers to help his frakking business!) The adventure skips along quickly, with moments of scary breathlessness as well more humorous interludes and moments of sadness and loss. All are woven together into a quest story that never flags, throwing in unexpected twists and turns as well as moments of grace and insight. Race to the Sun is part of Disney’s Rick Riordan Presents imprint -- which is a great fit, as I can see this book absolutely being a hit for kids who’ve read and loved the Percy Jackson books and are eager for more tales of heroes and legends and the ordinary kids who find hidden gifts inside themselves. I also think it’s important that both Native and non-Native young readers have the opportunity to be exposed to mythologies beyond the Greek and Roman that are taught in school. Race to the Sun does this in an engaging, authentic way without ever making it feel like being force-fed something educational. Highly recommended for middle grade readers and their parents, teachers, and anyone else who appreciates seeing well-written, engrossing stories with multicultural perspectives end up in the hands of excited readers! Review copy courtesy of the publisher via NetGalley. Full review at Bookshelf Fantasies.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Devann

    actual rating: 3.5 I've been really enjoying all these great books from the Riordan Presents imprint and this one is no exception. It was a fun action-packed book with a lot of cool introductory information about Native American mythology. I am not as familiar with this kind of mythology as some others so I feel like there were definitely a few things that went over my head but I'm sure everything will be expanded on in future books and it was still a quick and enjoyable read. I'll definitely be actual rating: 3.5 I've been really enjoying all these great books from the Riordan Presents imprint and this one is no exception. It was a fun action-packed book with a lot of cool introductory information about Native American mythology. I am not as familiar with this kind of mythology as some others so I feel like there were definitely a few things that went over my head but I'm sure everything will be expanded on in future books and it was still a quick and enjoyable read. I'll definitely be checking out the next one!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Megan

    Pretty sure Rebecca Roanhorse could do a magical retelling of the phone book, and I would give it five stars.... she is too powerful and must be nerfed. ANYWAY. Race to the Sun is the adventure novel of my heart: Nizhoni sees monsters. When her dad is kidnapped by one posing as his new boss, Nizhoni, her brother, and her best friend must journey into the Dinétah--Navajo lands--and complete a heroes' quest of epic proportions to get Spider Woman's help and make it to the house of the Sun. But Pretty sure Rebecca Roanhorse could do a magical retelling of the phone book, and I would give it five stars.... she is too powerful and must be nerfed. ANYWAY. Race to the Sun is the adventure novel of my heart: Nizhoni sees monsters. When her dad is kidnapped by one posing as his new boss, Nizhoni, her brother, and her best friend must journey into the Dinétah--Navajo lands--and complete a heroes' quest of epic proportions to get Spider Woman's help and make it to the house of the Sun. But they only have four days to find four perfect gifts for Spider Woman and defeat four different trials on the Rainbow Road to get to the Sun. If they fail, the monsters will be set free and destroy more than just Nizhoni's hopes for a dinner at the Pasta Palace... The latest episode of the "Megan is Brought to Tears by Rick Riordan Presents Novels" Show, Race to the Sun is a heartwarming, hilarious adventure that digs into the importance of family and the beauty of knowing one's self. Nizhoni, much like Tristan (of Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky) is the seventh grade hero we deserve in this hell of a world: she's brave, she's scared; she doesn't give up even in the face of giant vulture monsters or her dad getting kidnapped; she's got some anger management issues, but she's working through them. She's hilarious and her dialogue reads like a real kid. She's got real kid problems on top of her magical, monsterslaying problems, and real seventh graders are going to relate to her so much. Roanhorse brings Navajo stories to life with her signature prose: casual and friendly, but still beautiful and full of turns of phrase that make this English major melt. Her characters are wonderfully true to life. And the way she weaves the history and lore into the contemporary setting is clever and educational without being boring or dry. Nizhoni's voice helps with this, as she peppers in her own opinions about the monsters she's fighting with witty asides and true seventh grade charm. Her journey from angry girl longing for recognition to proud monsterslayer brave enough to stand up for and forgive her family is beautiful to watch unfold, and her trials along the way had me both in tears and laughing out loud. She's so brave. I love her so much. I'm going to cry again. This book is so important in terms of representation; it's important for Native American kids to get to see themselves and I hope this book starts a trend. The RRP Imprint is so important and is doing such good work, but I hope, I hope that Race to the Sun is a new jumping off point for other Native stories to become mainstream. I want to learn all the stories, and I'm a white adult. I cannot imagine how deeply kids are going to jump into these stories. They are hungry, and I hope publishing feeds them. AGAIN. ANYWAY. I keep getting sidetracked because I just.... am so glad this imprint exists for kids who want to be represented, who want to read stories about themselves. It's SO GOOD. OKAY, OFF THE SOAPBOX, MEGAN. Roanhorse crafts a stunning, epic tale of adventure and family that brings the history and stories of the Navajo people to a contemporary setting, with characters who feel real, a warm wit that had me laughing out loud, and a beautiful message about learning who you are--so long as you're brave enough to be that person. Pre-order it now, because you will want it as soon as humanly possible.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Paige Green

    Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher and Netgalley. Thanks! All opinions are my own. Book: Race to the Sun Author: Rebecca Roanhorse Book Series: Standalone so far Rating: 5/5 Diversity: Native American main and side characters and lore. Publication Date: January 14, 2020 Genre: MG Fantasy Recommended Age: 12+ (some violence, some slightly scary moments) Publisher: Rick Riordan Presents Pages: 320 Amazon Link Synopsis: Lately, seventh grader Nizhoni Begay has been able to detect monsters, Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher and Netgalley. Thanks! All opinions are my own. Book: Race to the Sun Author: Rebecca Roanhorse Book Series: Standalone so far Rating: 5/5 Diversity: Native American main and side characters and lore. Publication Date: January 14, 2020 Genre: MG Fantasy Recommended Age: 12+ (some violence, some slightly scary moments) Publisher: Rick Riordan Presents Pages: 320 Amazon Link Synopsis: Lately, seventh grader Nizhoni Begay has been able to detect monsters, like that man in the fancy suit who was in the bleachers at her basketball game. Turns out he's Mr. Charles, her dad's new boss at the oil and gas company, and he's alarmingly interested in Nizhoni and her brother, Mac, their Navajo heritage, and the legend of the Hero Twins. Nizhoni knows he's a threat, but her father won't believe her. When Dad disappears the next day, leaving behind a message that says "Run!", the siblings and Nizhoni's best friend, Davery, are thrust into a rescue mission that can only be accomplished with the help of Diné Holy People, all disguised as quirky characters. Their aid will come at a price: the kids must pass a series of trials in which it seems like nature itself is out to kill them. If Nizhoni, Mac, and Davery can reach the House of the Sun, they will be outfitted with what they need to defeat the ancient monsters Mr. Charles has unleashed. But it will take more than weapons for Nizhoni to become the hero she was destined to be . . . Timeless themes such as the importance of family and respect for the land resonate in this funny, fast-paced, and exciting quest adventure set in the American Southwest. Review: Oh my god, let’s talk about THIS BOOK. It was AMAZING! I loved the Native American rep in this, I loved how the lore was so effortlessly interwoven in this read, I loved how the characters were developed and how the world was built. The writing was phenomenal and the pacing was on key. The book is an amazing adventure and I loved every minute of it. I loved being in Nizhoni’s mind and I loved how the author snuck in references in the book about the harm that pipelines and other oil industry moves have on the land and environment. I feel that this book is very well rounded, I read it in about 2 hours, but for fairness sakes I will say that the end fight scene was a bit chaotic for me to read and I wished that there was more of this book. I think the author has an amazing talent for writing and I want her to continue with Nizhoni’s adventures. Also, I need to know what happened to “the other kids”. Verdict: Amazing read and definitely worth it! Seriously, go read it!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Michelle Kenneth - PerfectionistWannabe.com

    Excellent work. I absolutely loved this story. This is another story of gods and demigods in the Rick Riordan Presents universe, but written by Rebecca Roanhorse, who covers the Navajo gods. I love reading stories about the Navajo gods. This is the second book I've read this year that incorporates present day with the stories of the ancient Navajo gods. When I was a kid, the books I read about our Native Americans were written by...not Navajo people. I think it is better to learn about their ways Excellent work. I absolutely loved this story. This is another story of gods and demigods in the Rick Riordan Presents universe, but written by Rebecca Roanhorse, who covers the Navajo gods. I love reading stories about the Navajo gods. This is the second book I've read this year that incorporates present day with the stories of the ancient Navajo gods. When I was a kid, the books I read about our Native Americans were written by...not Navajo people. I think it is better to learn about their ways and their stories from them. That is why diverse books and diverse authors are so important. Nizhoni is a young 12 year old girl of Navajo descent that is just trying to make her mark in the world. Like most kids, she wants to be seen as popular or as a hero. She sucks at most things, especially basketball, but she wants the chance at the winning shot with just 5 seconds left on the clock, only to become distracted by a monster in the crowd. So she takes a basketball to the nose and loses the game. Her brother, Marcus (aka Mac), is only 10 months younger than her and a gifted artist. They live with their father, who is doing his best to provide for his children after their mom ran out. He is being offered a new job in a different state and the CEO of the company has decided to pay them a visit. Ends up the new boss, Mr. Charles, is the monster Nizhoni saw in the crowd. That is Nizhoni's special power. She can see monsters. She soon discovers that her little brother has powers of his own. The two together are part of an ancient line. She and her brother are the reincarnation of the Navajo twins of legend that were monsterslayers. [In mythology, the twins were called the slayer of alien gods.] When Mr. Charles takes the family out to dinner (with Nizhoni staying behind, because she tried to attack Mr. Charles (the monster) and her dad thought she was nuts, so he made her stay at home), she meets her stuffed horned toad, Mr. Yazzie. I say "meets" because Mr. Yazzie comes to life to set her on her path to help save the world from a much bigger problem. Mr. Charles is trying to free the monsters that her ancestors imprisoned. He needs Mac to help him. That is why he's really there. Mr. Charles kidnaps Nizhoni and Mac's dad, and attempts to steal them away, too. But the kids are able to run away with the help of Nizhoni's friend Davery (who is a genius). They are off to look for the Spider Woman so she can give them a map to get to the Glittering World, so that they can find the Sun god to ask for special weapons to defeat Mr. Charles before he unleashes the monsters. They only have 4 days and 4 trials to survive in order to get the weapons they need (if they get there). This story stays true to the Rick Riordan Presents demigod universe. Kids (and kids at heart) will learn about the history of the Navajo people by learning about their mythology, while on a wild heroic ride to save the world. This was such a fun ride, I hope we are able to do this again, because I want to know more about the Navajo gods and their mythology! Thank you to Disney Hyperion for the ARC. This book was everything. Absolutely loved it!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Katie Reus

    I listened to this first because I wanted to see if it was too mature for my kid and ended up loving it. Great listen/read!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Cheryl

    Debbie Reese gives this an evaluation of Not Recommended. She posted an article by Michael Thompson on her website here: https://americanindiansinchildrenslit... Btw, they're not keen on Trail of Lightning, either, unfortunately. Just goes to show that "Own Voices" is not a sufficient & simple basis for evaluation, that we need to consider other metrics.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Dejanira Dawn

    Um the Hero Twins?!? YES please!!! (I was thinking this was Mayan mythology but The Storm Runner is coming out so it can't be. ) But Native American mythology??! That has Hero Twins?? NEED

  17. 5 out of 5

    Sharon Lawler

    Adventure and Navajo mythology, combined with unique character voices and personalities, especially the younger brother, will keep the middle grade-junior high reader completely involved in this mystery set in the Southwest US. Mythology is not my forte, but this might just make me a convert.

  18. 4 out of 5

    James

    Riordan Presents books have just been so good. I mean I havent gotten to all of them yet, but the ones I have read? So good. Nizhónís story is no exception. Its got a bit of humor to go with the monsters. The stories and figures in this book were so interesting. I want to go find out more about everything right now. Its 2 AM when Im writing this, so maybe tomorrow would be a better idea? This book follows primarily Nizhóní but along with her on her journey to save the world are her best friend Riordan Presents books have just been so good. I mean I haven’t gotten to all of them yet, but the ones I have read? So good. Nizhóní’s story is no exception. It’s got a bit of humor to go with the monsters. The stories and figures in this book were so interesting. I want to go find out more about everything right now. It’s 2 AM when I’m writing this, so maybe tomorrow would be a better idea? This book follows primarily Nizhóní but along with her on her journey to save the world are her best friend Davery and her brother Mac. Davery may not be magical like Nizhóní or her brother, but he’s always there for them. He’s smart. He might be kind of a nerd but nerds can be heroes too. As an adult I of course knew that, but 12 year old me would’ve loved to see that. Mac is Nizhóní’s younger brother and has his own ancestral power. He can control water. He realizes this in a really cool scene with some bullies who’ve been bothering him. He’s also a great artist like his mother. We don’t get to see too much of that. I wasn’t too mad at that, though. They’re trying to save the world. Saving the best for last is Nizhóní. She is a monsterslayer and with that comes some powers of her own. She wants nothing more than to be the hero and/or famous. Whether that be in a basketball game, on YouTube or anything else. None of that seems to end well for her, though. She was truly a good kid, but she had struggles to work through. Anger has been a struggle for her. Her women seemingly left their family when she was a toddler. Through this whole journey she learns what being a hero truly is. This story follows a pretty standard form anyone familiar with middle grade novels, especially Rick Riordan’s. It’s a quest the main character has to undertake to save the world. Along the way they face monsters, have some magical help and of course they’re got trials to face. Where I think this book really shines among the others is the basis it’s built on. The stories that inspired this one are not ones I think most of us know a lot about. So even though the basic plot might be familiar, everything else felt so new. I loved it.

  19. 4 out of 5

    NinjaMuse

    In brief: Nizhoni can see monsters. One of them is her dads new boss, but no one believes her. Then he kidnaps her dad and she, her brother, and her best friend must travel across the Navajo reservation to find the Holy People who can help save her dad and stop the monsters for good. Full disclosure: This was a reading copy I received through work, with the expectation that Id like it enough to recommend the book on release, and with the knowledge that I liked Roanhorses books to begin with. In brief: Nizhoni can see monsters. One of them is her dad’s new boss, but no one believes her. Then he kidnaps her dad and she, her brother, and her best friend must travel across the Navajo reservation to find the Holy People who can help save her dad and stop the monsters for good. Full disclosure: This was a reading copy I received through work, with the expectation that I’d like it enough to recommend the book on release, and with the knowledge that I liked Roanhorse’s books to begin with. Thoughts: This was an enjoyable read, but I’ve run into the age-gap problem. This is aimed at eleven-year-olds. I am … not eleven, so the things that make work for kids—the humour, the bold strokes plot, the somewhat zany adventures and challenges—kept being a little less-than-great for me. I’m too used to depth and complexity, I think. That didn’t stop me from happily following Nizhoni on her adventure, though. I liked her blend of timidity and boldness and the way she was engaged with her cultural heritage even though she realistically didn’t know everything about it. I liked her sidekicks too, though I have to say, Davery the nerd was definitely my favourite. I also liked the way Roanhorse wrote the Holy People as traditionally Navajo without losing their contemporary feel, and the way she dropped in tidbits of Navajo and other indigenous cultures that didn’t necessarily have to do with the plot. Three things lessened my enjoyment in particular. The first is again a me-problem: Roanhorse’s adult novels are also grounded in Navajo culture and have enough of the “magical” elements in common with Race to the Sun that I kept having to remind myself this was a separate world. The second is that Nizhoni occasionally sounded a bit too old or a bit too young to be 12–13, but I’m not sure that’s something a less-tuned-in reader would pick up on, and honestly, I don’t really remember being that age for comparison anyway. And the third is that Roanhorse is clearly following a standardized structure, with the characters tackling one obstacle after another and largely hitting Hero’s Journey beats. Again, this is something I don’t think kids would necessarily pick up on. To repeat, though, those are adult-reader problems, and didn’t really knock this down too much for me. I liked a lot of it! The grumpy horned lizard! The Spider Woman joke! The middle school, which I’m really hoping pops up in further indigenous Riordan Presents titles because I doubt it’ll ever exist in reality and it was cool! The themes of family and respect that ran through everything on several levels! The Navajo 101 stuff not feeling more heavy-handed than I’d expect for middle-grade! The humour not feeling nearly as in-your-face as I remember from Aru Shah and the End of Time. And Roanhorse tackles a few deeper indigenous topics, like a missing mom and the conflict between cultural values and surviving in White culture, with gentle sensitivity. All in all, this is a liked but didn’t love, which is about what I expected, knowing that I’m pretty old for middle grade at this point. It’s a good book and I do recommend it, and not only for indigenous kids needing rep. It’s a plain fun fantasy adventure. 7/10 Contains: school bullies, brothers who do not listen, largely absent parents, nasty white people

  20. 5 out of 5

    Kristina Marie

    1.5 Race to the Sun is pretty much a standard Rick Riordan book. The main difference is that its less detailed and scaled down so that the whole adventure fits into one book instead of three. I like reading Riordans books and love that he has a series where underrepresented cultures get to tell their stories in a Riordan-style way. Sounded like a win-win until Rebecca Roanhorse (Ohkay Owingeh) was chosen to write a Diné story. Why would they choose a non-Diné to tell the Diné story? Or why didnt 1.5 Race to the Sun is pretty much a standard Rick Riordan book. The main difference is that it’s less detailed and scaled down so that the whole adventure fits into one book instead of three. I like reading Riordan’s books and love that he has a series where underrepresented cultures get to tell their stories in a Riordan-style way. Sounded like a win-win until Rebecca Roanhorse (Ohkay Owingeh) was chosen to write a Diné story. Why would they choose a non-Diné to tell the Diné story? Or why didn’t they have Roanhorse tell an Ohkay Owingeh story? Seems to go against the premise of this whole series. The other thing that bothers me is how Roanhorse didn't change the Riordan-style portrayal of Gods. The way Riordan writes Gods doesn't always show them in a respectful or favorable light. They are usually shown to be ridiculous, petty, goofy, etc. That isn't a big problem when we're talking about ancient Gods. The problem here is that the Diné are a living people and these stories are just as sacred and holy as all other religious stories. That puts pressure on the shoulders of the author to find the balance between respectful truth and funny adventure story. In the end, Roanhorse struggles to find that balance. Her characters are underdeveloped, her plot is thin, and time after time she chooses snark over compassion. There were times reading this where I would cringe and knew that the Diné did, too, because if you do any research on this book or the author you would find that the Diné themselves don’t recommend this read. I am more than disappointed, because this could have been a great book to introduce young readers to the beliefs of a Native American group in a fun, authentic, and stereotype-free way. Instead readers are left with a reduced, drive-by caricature of Diné life.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Rameela (Star)

    Initial thoughts: my only complaint is that it ended too soon😭😭😭😭 this was so fun! Full REVIEW ON MY BLOG Id definitely recommend this to anyone who is a fan of ownvoices, learning new mythology, wants an adventure worthy of making a youtube channel for, talkingfrogs?, and daughters who will do anything to save their father. If you like hot cheetos, prophecies told in song, a chosen one, friendship and family, and realizing that you dont need to be anyone other than yourself, then this book is Initial thoughts: my only complaint is that it ended too soon😭😭😭😭 this was so fun! Full REVIEW ON MY BLOG I’d definitely recommend this to anyone who is a fan of ownvoices, learning new mythology, wants an adventure worthy of making a youtube channel for, talking…frogs?, and daughters who will do anything to save their father. If you like hot cheetos, prophecies told in song, a chosen one, friendship and family, and realizing that you don’t need to be anyone other than yourself, then this book is definitely for you!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Sami

    Nizhoni Begay is a heroine you won't soon forget! In the latest Rick Riordan presents, we delve into Native American mythology with bombastic glee as Nizhoni learns about her heritage and what it takes to become a hero. With a colorful cast of side characters-Mr. Yazzie the horned toad being a personal favorite- it's a race to the sun god for mythical weapons so Nizhoni and co can free her father from a tyrannical monster (who also happens to be an oil baron).

  23. 4 out of 5

    Marzie

    Rick Riordan Presents is a middle-grade series with the express purpose of promoting "great voices from cultures that have been marginalized or erased by mainstream culture" and allowing children and youth to find representation in literature. For US readers, perhaps no perspective is more needed in fiction than the Native American one. Many readers of adult dystopian fantasy already know Rebecca Roanhorse, the Campbell (now Astounding), Hugo, Nebula, and Locus Award-winning author of largely Rick Riordan Presents is a middle-grade series with the express purpose of promoting "great voices from cultures that have been marginalized or erased by mainstream culture" and allowing children and youth to find representation in literature. For US readers, perhaps no perspective is more needed in fiction than the Native American one. Many readers of adult dystopian fantasy already know Rebecca Roanhorse, the Campbell (now Astounding), Hugo, Nebula, and Locus Award-winning author of largely Navajo mythos-based fiction. It's no surprise, given her imaginative The Sixth World series, that her first foray into juvenile literature is sheer delight. Seventh-grader Nizhoni Begay, has a serious problem. She has started seeing monsters, including the one who is trying to hire her dad. Mr. Charles owns a fracking company and sadly Mr. Begay just wants a job that will pay him to support his kids. After Mr. Charles pulls a knife on her, Nizhoni confides in her younger brother Mac and before they know it, they are trying to rescue their father and learn more about their special powers. Because Mac has powers, too. Nizhoni's best friend Davery plans to join them as they seek help from the Diné Holy People, who appear in various guises at crucial moments in their journey. The three kids have to pass a series of tests to gain the aid they need to set things right and maybe just maybe Nizhoni and Mac will get some answers along the way about their missing mom, and her mysterious heritage. (She could see monsters? Really!?) The humorous yet loving relationship between Nizhoni and Mac was delightful. Drawing on Navajo beliefs, including respect for elders, traditions, and natural resources, Roanhorse has spun an engaging book that is fun for both adults and children to read. Best of all, there's plenty of room for further adventures. I also listened to the terrific audiobook narrated by Kinsale Hueston. I received a courtesy copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Darla

    At times heartwarming and at others heartbreaking. Kids who love fantasy and super heroes will definitely want to read this book from Rick Riordan presents. Nizhoni is twelve and she is starting to see monsters. When her dad's new boss is one of them, the action begins. Nizhoni, her brother Mac, and her best friend Davery escape Albuquerque on a train and begin their quest to visit the Spider Woman, stock up on weapons, and get to the house of the sun. Filled with Navajo legends and vocabulary At times heartwarming and at others heartbreaking. Kids who love fantasy and super heroes will definitely want to read this book from Rick Riordan presents. Nizhoni is twelve and she is starting to see monsters. When her dad's new boss is one of them, the action begins. Nizhoni, her brother Mac, and her best friend Davery escape Albuquerque on a train and begin their quest to visit the Spider Woman, stock up on weapons, and get to the house of the sun. Filled with Navajo legends and vocabulary with a glossary in the back. A great addition to middle grade fiction that is long overdue. Thank you to Disney Books and NetGalley for a digital ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    Race to the Sun is another series in the Rick Riordan Presents imprint. I was really excited when I saw that Rebecca Roanhorse was writing for this imprint. I love her Sixth World series and I'm happy to see another Native American mythology represented in this imprint. Like all of the RR Presents books, it's written for a middle grade audience and does wonderful job of introducing the reader to the chosen mythology, while also staying grounded in its cultural place today. Nizhoni faces dynamic Race to the Sun is another series in the Rick Riordan Presents imprint. I was really excited when I saw that Rebecca Roanhorse was writing for this imprint. I love her Sixth World series and I'm happy to see another Native American mythology represented in this imprint. Like all of the RR Presents books, it's written for a middle grade audience and does wonderful job of introducing the reader to the chosen mythology, while also staying grounded in its cultural place today. Nizhoni faces dynamic challenges, ones common to all kids (arguing with parents, desire for popularity and acceptance) as well as ones particular to her story (loss of her mother at a young age, ability to see monsters, and eventually knowledge that she was born to be a monster slayer). She doesn't always make the "right" choices and the consequences play out in the story, a "teaching opportunity" for a young audience that isn't done in a pandering way. I highly recommend this book and can't wait to read the next one.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Kacey

    I like to keep my eye out for Rick Riordan Presents novels, so when I saw this one was finally out I immediately got it from the library. I have very little knowledge on Native American stories, culture, traditions, or anything, so I was looking forward to seeing what this presented. It's a pretty quick read-- the book barely clocks in at 300 pages-- and the chapters were pretty short, so it's ideal for the more reluctant leader. I also like that the kids did feel and talk like kids. There was I like to keep my eye out for Rick Riordan Presents novels, so when I saw this one was finally out I immediately got it from the library. I have very little knowledge on Native American stories, culture, traditions, or anything, so I was looking forward to seeing what this presented. It's a pretty quick read-- the book barely clocks in at 300 pages-- and the chapters were pretty short, so it's ideal for the more reluctant leader. I also like that the kids did feel and talk like kids. There was love between the siblings but also some bickering and annoyance, and I think those things were written well. I did learn some stuff about the Navajo and while the narrator is a girl, I think this is a book that any kid can enjoy. The only issue I have is that the emotional connection isn't always there. It definitely is with the siblings, but not as much with the dad. Nizhone's dad is played up as being very emotionally distant with his kids but I never really understood why and the end felt a little too neat, especially since the narrative made it seem like he's acted that way for years. I will say the moment where Nizhone was angry with her mother felt genuine, though, so it's a weird mixed bag. The ending felt really rushed. Some things happen and it's just accepted and they move on. It also might be my cynical adult mind, but they talk a lot about sacrifice and hard work and then they turn around and say "oh, it's the thought that counts" which kind of negates the sacrifice. I still think it was a good adventure story. I like it did emphasize how being a hero meant more than just slaying the monster or looking cool, that there is hard work involved. I also like that the kid characters felt real, and it was great to learn more about the Navajo. I'm sure someone more familiar with the stories and the culture will get more out of it than I did and I'm glad Native kids have this hero in fiction. But even speaking as a non-Native, I enjoyed it and I have no doubt any kid who picks up the book will as well.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Renata

    The Rick Riordan Presents books are still killing it! I read Roanhorse's adult sci-fi book and found it a bit too gritty for my personal tastes, but this middle-grade story was just right for my delicate sensibilities. Nizhoni is a great narrator and this was a really fun quest with a very satisfying conclusion, though still setting itself up for a sequel (that I can't wait to read)!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Dani(elle)

    I'm all about that #OwnVoices so this story makes me happy.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Wendelle

    This book is about a warmhearted quest to save the world by three indigenous children.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Keira

    This book was so realistic and full of adventure! I loved it and I couldnt put it down! This book was so realistic and full of adventure! I loved it and I couldn’t put it down!

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