"Shadowshaper" by Daniel José Older


TITLE: Shadowshaper

AUTHOR: Daniel José Older

PUBLISHER: Arthur Levine Books

PUBLISHED DATE: June 30, 2015

ISBN: 978-0545591614

PAGES: 304

I enjoyed this book.

That's saying a lot since I'm not, generally, a fan of fantasy.

First of all, the cover is EV-ER-Y-THING! This cover just makes we want to grow out an Afro and rainbow sparkle it out! Sierra Santiago is fierce, tough, and street all rolled up into a story that entertains and preaches all at the same time.

I listened to the audiobook, read by the beautiful and talented - Anika Noni Rose. Soooo good!!!! She did an amazing job - singing and effortlessly code-switching in Spanish and Caribbean dialects. Rose was official!

Sierra is just a typical teenager at Octavia Butler High - painting murals, chilling with friends, and thinking about how to spend hot summer days in Brooklyn when her paintings mysteriously start weeping. This starts Sierra on an epic journey to decode her family's secrets, hang with the dope librarian at Columbia University, and find out about these Shadowshapers. This story takes on themes of gentrification, colorism, natural hair, and the context and layers of culture. This book is a definite must for the fantasy lover looking to diversify their reading list.

Recommendation: Read it!

Audience: Young Adults (Grade 7 and up)

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