- Author: Angeline Boulley
- Genre: YA Thriller
- Background-Indigenous; Ojibwe
- IG-@angelineboulley; Twitter-@FineAngeline; https://angelineboulley.com/
- Release Date: 3/16/2021 (out NAOW!)
- Publisher: Henry Holt (Imprint of MacMillan)
- Favorite Character-Granny June! She is SO FREAKING FUNNY and so real! I think she is just the best…I actually wished she was my granny (not replacing the one I have, of course, but she could be like my adopted granny)! Her granddaughter and Daunis’ best friend, Lily, comes in a close second because she’s like a younger version of Granny June!
- Favorite Quote(s)– “Now when I die, yous gotta promise to get Tribal Council to be pallbearers at my funeral.”-she pauses for dramatic effect-“so they can let me down one last time.”-Granny June…I was CRYING when I read that line! She’s too funny and I could read a book of just her quotes all day…I wouldn’t mind a prequel from her perspective cause some of the things she says makes you want to read that story! There is another thought that Daunis had that really resonated with me and it was: “When someone dies, everything about them becomes past tense. Except for the grief. Grief stays in the present.” WHEWWWWWWWWW…there it is, what isn’t said that should be more often and respected.
Y’all…Y’all…Y’ALL! I’m SOOOOOOOOO OBSESSED WITH FIREKEEPER’S DAUGHTER! If you were like “was it the cover?”…ummmmm, you right…but also, FireKeeper’s Daughter is PHENOOOOOOOOMENAL! From the story telling to the characters, it just grabs your attention and doesn’t let you go! Angeline put her FOOT in this book y’all! Since I finished this book in February, I have not been able to stop talking about it…like, it stays in my mouth (I’m not ashamed to say that either)! If you follow me on instagram or on clubhouse, I STAY shouting about it! I LOVEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE THIS BOOK! Now, while I’m apart of the blog tour for this book with MacMillan, I was going to write this post anyway…I’m seriously obsessed! The day I received a book box for this book, I opened it on IG Live & completely geeked out…if you would like to watch my moment, here you go!
I’mma take a moment to talk about the cover because it deserves it time in the spotlight! Pause here to scroll up to admire the cover because it should be stared at often! Welcome back! Now, this cover is STUNNNNNNING!!! The cover artist seriously DID THAT! From the illustration to the color scheme and fonts…it is simply beautiful! There is even metallic foil on it that really makes it POP! I could stare at it all day and not get bored (It’s right next to me as I write this)! It represents the book perfectly and if I could hug the cover artist, I totally would but #SocialDistancing so I’ll give them a pound or high five! *UGH* I just love it so much!
Being the book cover judge that I am, I didn’t even need to know the premise of this book to know I wanted to read it (call me shallow but this instinct hasn’t steered me [or you] wrong so I will keep rolling with it). Though when I heard the premise of the book, I was like “oh yea, I’m definitely reading that”… I basically did the virtual version of tackling one of my favs at MacMillan by emailing them right away about FireKeeper’s Daughter (Shout Outs to Morgan) and OF COURSE, jumped at the chance at being on this blog tour…which, just a reminder, that this post would exist with or without it because #ImObsessed!
The story that Angeline told through Daunis, the main character is nothing short of amazing! I would read till I was ready to go to sleep then wake up to go back to reading….I never wanted to put my tablet down and I don’t think I’ve ever been so attached to it before! There was so much going on in this story and yet, I didn’t feel the least bit overwhelmed by it…stressed, yes…anxious, absolutely…but overwhelmed, not in the least! The way that Angeline wrote this book was so poetic and it felt good just to lean into the story. I felt like I was there beside Daunis the entire time (and I may or may not have yelled at her like she could hear me *shifty eyes*). I’m honestly not much of a thriller reader (though others may beg to differ, lol) but this makes me want to pick up more if I think I can get through it all without having pulled my hair out or bit my nails down to the quick! What I DO KNOW and think is that I will read anything that Angeline writes from now on. That’s it, the gavel has been pounded and it’s final!
I must, I must, I must talk about my favs in this book! Granny June is the grandma I wish I had as a teen but am likely to be when I grow up! She is so funny and so real…you just couldn’t get a better (or bad in the best of ways) influence & person in Granny June! On top of that, when you add her peoples from the community center/senior center, you’ve got yourself one hell of a party! They are so funny together and the banter is simply BRILLIANT! I wanted to go hang out with them and listen to all of their stories…I wouldn’t need to say a word, just sit back and listen to the wisdom and witness the shenanigans… I would be content with that for the rest of my days! Here is an example: Granny June- “Miigwetch, my girl. Mmmm … dark and bitter, just like my first husband.” Her homegirl Minnie- “Gets you riled up, too. Hot stuff.” I just about DIED when I read that…and if you want to know about the context…well, you just gotta read the book so you can see when this was said and about what, lol! These are the type of elders I could rock with! Where they at?! I’m ready to kick it with them!
Another character I loved, which would be a surprise to no one because of who my fav is, is Lily! Lily is the best friend that we all need! The way she bantered with Daunis is just the greatest and the balance that she brought to her is the pinnacle of what a good friendship is! I also loved how she would let Daunis know if she was being unrealistic and wayyyyy too into her head…sometimes we just need that friend that will tell us to have a seat when we are doing too much and that friend here is Lily! Even in when Daunis was thinking in the vein of WWLD (What Would Lily Do), it was clear that she was a guiding light or devil on her shoulder (depends on the situation, lol). Another thing I loved is her sense of humor and wit…something she clearly inherited from Granny June! She balanced humor and seriousness so brilliantly like when she said: “Holy Wah. Yous look like you fought a pack of rez dogs and lost.” LOL! Way to tell people they look like crap Lily…and I’m here for it! If I could hug Lily and hang out with her, I would jump at the chance because she knew how to have a good time!
Of course, I gotta talk about Daunis because she is just so dope! First of all, she is super intelligent and she OWNSSSS it! Nothing warms my heart more than a fellow nerd who isn’t afraid to let others know just how smart they are! Her quips about facts are just THE BEST like this one: “That’s not what Occam’s razor means. It’s a problem-solving principle about competing hypotheses and starting at the one with the fewest assumptions.” !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! *Insert Head Exploding Emoji with accompanying sound effects here* Did you just fall in love? Cause I did all over again! #AllTheHeartEyes! Seriously, she spoke to my nerdy Spirit! Not only is she intelligent but she is resilient and such a bada$$. Baby girl went through so much but she was such a G… I adored her “F**k It, I’ll Do It” attitude and how she knew when to call out people when appropriate! I just wanted to give her fist pumps when she bodied something or rock her in the moments when she was experiencing something jarring to her being… I would’ve been happy to play big sister or auntie to her in those moments. Daunis deserves all of the love & hype up!
Another thing I loved about this book is the way that Angeline shared Indigenous culture and teachings. It felt melodic and comforting in how she described their Tribal events or gatherings with her peers from story telling by the fire, reverence of elders, the dances, songs and the regalia. It was like Angeline was painting a picture that I wouldn’t want to stop looking at. I’ve been blessed to have gone to pow wows before the world descended into the chaos that is the panorama and I felt like I was right back on those grounds…smelling the scent of fresh fry bread, feeling the vibrations of the drums, listening to the jingles on their regalia and watching the blur of colors as they dance… It was such beautiful memory/image to pull from that invoked so much emotion for me. There was something that Daunis thought which I also thought was so important and that we all need to be reminded of which was: “I am overcome with a mixture of emotions. Sad that their innocent eyes are open to the trauma that still impacts our community today. Angry they must learn these truths in order to be strong Anishinaabeg in a world where Indians are thought of only in the past tense.” That is an entire SERMON! It is amazing that we live in a world where an entire Nation of people were taken advantage of, had their land stolen & lives taken and then have the nerve to speak of them as if they are past tense when they very much still present and experiencing so much injustice. There are so many lessons & gems throughout this book and I hope people pick them up & really digest them.
Another aspect that I really appreciated about this book is how grief is talked about and processed. I had actually read this book 2 months after my Grandpa passed away and when I tell you that I ugly cried while reading this book…I mean, I REALLY ugly cried (believe it or not, that is not me but it sure was when I was reading). The way Daunis viewed death is very much in line with my own views and how she processed her grief is how I imagined I would have too. She was angry, she wanted answers and she wouldn’t let anyone pacify her. The way Daunis used her grief to propel her forward was nothing short of awe-inspiring, especially when others would have found it to be debilitating (I may have at her age, to keep it real). I actually DMed Angeline about how she spoke about grief in this book and how hard it struck me. It led to a beautiful conversation about our loved ones who have passed on and how we have processed/are processing our grief. It is likely to make you evaluate how you process or have processed your own. Whenever you read this book, just make sure you keep a box of tissues or a handkerchief or a long sleeve near by because you WILL need it!
On a less serious note, FireKeeper’s Daughter has so many freaking funny moments! Whether its with Granny June & her senior center crew, Daunis with Lily or Daunis stunting in all her brainiac glory; there is so much humor woven throughout the story. There is a striking balance of seriousness to humor in FireKeeper’s Daughter that just leaves you floored…it was lowkey a masterclass in how to write & invoke emotions in a book. I was on a roller coaster the whole time that I didn’t want to get off of… and I don’t even LIKE roller coasters Y’all (actual roller coasts…emotional ones can be tolerated)! I really didn’t want this book to end, even though I knew it had to *quietly sobs*. I love a book that makes me cry, think and laugh throughout my time of reading and FireKeeper’s Daughter made me do all that and more! This book is seriously everything and you need to get it, if you haven’t already & read it so you can understand why I’m so obsessed with it!
I hope I have effectively convinced you as to why you need to get this book…If I need to say more to convince you, let me know cause I’m surely up to the task, LOL! Hopefully we’ve established some level of trust since you’ve read this post through! Alrighty y’all, I will end it here…for now. *smirks* As usual, I’m wishing you all Happy Reading and sending Bookish love your way! Feel free to find and follow me on all of the social medias: Instagram @bookishgirlmagic, Twitter @bookishgrlmagic and Clubhouse @bookishgrlmagic, especially on Tuesdays for the Pub Day: YA Edition room under the Diverse Shelves club for more bookish banter! Until the next post, BYEEEEEEE!