Release Date: March 16th 2021
Publisher: Rock the Boat
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 4.25/5 stars
As a biracial, unenrolled tribal member and the product of a scandal, eighteen-year-old Daunis Fontaine has never quite fit in, both in her hometown and on the nearby Ojibwe reservation. Daunis dreams of studying medicine, but when her family is struck by tragedy, she puts her future on hold to care for her fragile mother.
The only bright spot is meeting Jamie, the charming new recruit on her brother Levi’s hockey team. Yet even as Daunis falls for Jamie, certain details don’t add up and she senses the dashing hockey star is hiding something. Everything comes to light when Daunis witnesses a shocking murder, thrusting her into the heart of a criminal investigation.
Reluctantly, Daunis agrees to go undercover but secretly pursues her own investigation, tracking down the criminals with her knowledge of chemistry and traditional medicine. But the deceptions—and deaths—keep piling up and soon the threat strikes too close to home.
Now, Daunis must learn what it means to be a strong Anishinaabe kwe (Ojibwe woman) and how far she’ll go to protect her community, even if it tears apart the only world she’s ever known.
Firekeeper’s Daughter is a book that caught my eye because of that absolutely beautiful cover. The story follows Daunis a young biracial woman who struggles to fit in with her community. She hopes to go off to college and study medicine, but with recent family tragedies, she decides to stick around for another year to help her family grieve. When she meets Jamie, the new star of her brother’s hockey team, Daunis feels there might be a light at the end of the tunnel but when she witnesses a murder and becomes tangled up in a criminal investigation, Daunis finds herself becoming a confidential informant for the FBI. As she attempts to uncover who is bringing drugs into her community, what she finds could tear her world apart.
This book has been everywhere recently and it absolutely deserves the hype. This own voices story is incredibly gripping and I loved following Daunis as she attempts to protect her community and the people she loves. I really enjoyed learning the history and traditions of the Native American people. There is a strong sense of community in the story and there were a whole host of fascinating side characters. I particularly liked the Elders and Aunt Teddie. The characters in the story are all really well developed and I definitely found myself rooting for Daunis. She was a brilliant protagonist. She’s smart and determined, but also struggling with her identity and place in the world.
As Daunis delves deeper and deeper into the mystery of who is bringing the drugs into the community, I found myself coming up with lots of different theories as to who was responsible. They all ended up being wrong and I definitely did not see that ending coming. The story has a really hopeful ending and I am so excited to see what happens in book two. If you’ve been intrigued about Firekeeper’s Daughter I would absolutely recommend picking this one up.