Trail of Lightning

Trail of Lightning

Book - 2018 | First Saga Press hardcover edition.
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"While most of the world has drowned beneath the sudden rising waters of a climate apocalypse, Dinétah (formerly the Navajo reservation) has been reborn. The gods and heroes of legend walk the land, but so do monsters. Maggie Hoskie is a Dinétah monster hunter, a supernaturally gifted killer. When a small town needs help finding a missing girl, Maggie is their last best hope. But what Maggie uncovers about the monster is much more terrifying than anything she could imagine. Maggie reluctantly enlists the aid of Kai Arviso, an unconventional medicine man, and together they travel the rez, unraveling clues from ancient legends, trading favors with tricksters, and battling dark witchcraft in a patchwork world of deteriorating technology. As Maggie discovers the truth behind the killings, she will have to confront her past if she wants to survive." --amazon.com.
Publisher: New York, New York : Saga Press, [2018]
Edition: First Saga Press hardcover edition.
ISBN: 9781534413498
1534413499
9781534413504
1534413502
Branch Call Number: FIC ROANHOR
Characteristics: 287 pages ; 24 cm.

Opinion

From Library Staff

Speculative Fiction

Dystopian future centered on the protected Navajo nation with a tough as nails heroine. Navajo mores, myths and demons, no white guy "faeries" need apply in this thriller of a story.

Navajo-based, post-apocalyptic thrill ride featuring a monster-hunting heroine. Bet you haven't read that one before! First in what we can only hope is a long series. Suggested by Denise D.


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laurendouglass Jun 17, 2019

There is so much to love in this book. A strong, complex Native American female protagonist. A detailed rendering of a post-apocalyptic North America. A rich weaving of native culture into a future dystopia. A love story with no good, easy choices. And lots and lots of killing monsters. A very good, fast read, and hopefully, Book 2 will arrive very soon.

SPL_Melanie Jun 03, 2019

See full review under Summary Tab

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maybaby
May 21, 2019

Solid characters. Well paced. Can't wait for the next in the series.

Loved it, loved it, loved it! Roanhorse introduces readers to a world most of us have no clue about. A world of unknown gods and creatures we've never encountered. It's nice a fresh face in the world of sci-fi/ urban fantasy. Great book!

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eileenlufkin
Apr 02, 2019

On my for later list because skygiants says "I enjoyed Rebecca Roanhorse's Trail of Lightning very much and I would like to give especial kudos to the cover artist, because you take one look at the cover and you're like "okay, so what ARE the key genre factors about this book's protagonist? Well, I can tell right off that she has Cool Weapons and a Black Leather Jacket and a Car, all of which signify that she's probably a loner with an amazing powerset and a tragic backstory and a chip on her shoulder and, like, a lot of time spent fighting supernatural creatures in low-settled areas and then driving angstily off because Does She Bring the Darkness or Does the Darkness Bring Her --" And, yes, one hundred percent that's the kind of book this is, perfectly executed example of the genre, well done to both Rebecca Roanhorse and whoever designed the book. The book takes place in post-apocalyptic Dinétah, traditional lands of the Navajo people; the worldbuilding runs on a mix of Diné lore and post-apocalyptic Americana all bound together with some good old urban-road-fantasy Cars And Black Leather Jackets tropey grease....super readable and I'll happily continue with the next one.

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fionajay
Mar 19, 2019

Nominated for Nebula Awards 2019

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bogwolf
Mar 16, 2019

Roanhorse know what she's doing - confidently putting her hero (heroine) through her paces. The post-apocalyptic love child of Tony Hillerman and Jim Butcher, our story has magic and fighting and monsters and Diné flavor, maybe even a little romance.

Bold comic-book-style archetypes or cliched tropes... there's the rub. If it feels like the former, you're gonna like this Southwest adventure. If the latter, put it down and walk away. Nothing here surprises; it's all in the telling. Which Roanhorse knows. She references Hercules, and this *is* a story that's been written since 700 b.c. and told before that. But it's all in the telling, and Roanhorse knows what she's doing. I give it 4 stars.

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Nymeria23
Jan 01, 2019

OHHHH I loved this book.
It was made all the more intense once my professor brought up some dark themes to look for as the story went on <spoiler> specifically the theme of loss of control, rape, and victim blaming, which made this story all the more profound and heart-wrenching </spoiler> but it was so good. The characterization and development was great, the plot kept me engaged, and it felt like a pleasure read that was also naturally able to lead right into in-depth discussions. I loved it and am just so excited for the next book, I just LOVE Maggie.

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Linyarai
Jan 01, 2019

I read this for the "A Speed Read" part of my 2019 reading challenge. I was really impressed by this story. I enjoyed the characters and the mythology and legends, I look forward to the rest of the series.

j
jac523
Dec 07, 2018

This was a great start to a new series. Maggie is a fabulous heroine and the world that Roanhorse has created is terrifying, complex, fantastical, and just the right amount of believable. Urban fantasy fans will find a lot to love here.

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SPL_Melanie Jun 03, 2019

The Sixth World series is getting better with each volume! Book Two, Storm of Locusts, has just been released, following up on 2017’s Trail of Lightning. This apocalyptic dark fantasy is written by an Indigenous woman from the States, and features a world in which cataclysmic climate change has altered the shape of the world. Most of the coastal areas are gone, and what’s left has reverted to chaotic rule.

Meanwhile, Dinétah (or the former Navajo reservation) has been saved by the wall that was built around it in the old days as a racist measure; it kept out the floods and Dinétah is a relatively safe place. Except for the resurgence of the old gods and monsters of Navajo legend.

Maggie Hoskie is a Dinétah monster hunter, a supernaturally gifted killer. She’s been trained in violent techniques that aim to rid the people of these cannibalistic, terrifying monsters. And along the way she meets and fights and is mentored by varied demigods. While she searches for the victims of different attacks, she’s also dealing with betrayals in her personal life, and the appearance of a potential new relationship.

In book one Maggie forms new alliances with fellow Dinétah residents and faces down her previous mentor, now an adversary. At the end of that story we’re left wondering if Maggie did the right thing in a final showdown. And in book two, we find out.

This time around Maggie has to face the world outside the wall – some of her new friends have been drawn away by a mysterious cult leader, and with her actual job being to track down gods and monsters she must investigate. In this fast-paced story, Roanhorse draws an even more detailed view of the Sixth World from both inside and outside of Dinétah, and it makes for exciting, complex storytelling.

If you are ready for something fresh, thrilling, and imaginative, full of Indigenous characters and social commentary, albeit with a hefty dose of violent action and some sexual content, this is a fantastic new series. Those who’ve enjoyed other dark urban fantasy such as Eden Robinson’s Trickster series are sure to find this series an appealing read.

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