In the hottest hour of the hottest day of the year, a fateful wind blows into Oaxaca City. It whistles down cobbled streets and rustles the jacaranda trees before slipping into the window of an eleven-year-old girl named Clara. Unbeknownst to her, Clara has been marked for la Lotería. Life and Death deal the Lotería cards but once a year, and the stakes could not be higher. Every card reveals a new twist in Clara’s fate — a scorpion, an arrow, a blood-red rose. If Life wins, Clara will live to a ripe old age. If Death prevails, she’ll flicker out like a candle.
But Clara knows none of this. All she knows is that her young cousin Esteban has vanished, and she’ll do whatever it takes to save him, traveling to the mythical Kingdom of Las Pozas, where every action has a price, and every choice has consequences. And though it seems her fate is sealed, Clara just might have what it takes to shatter the game and choose a new path. Karla Arenas Valenti weaves an adventure steeped in magic and mythology — gorgeously illustrated by Dana Sanmar — exploring the notion of free will in a world where fate holds all the cards.
"From the first line of this philosophical debut, Arenas Valenti demonstrates a gift for interweaving immersive, sensory-rich storytelling ('Life sauntered into town on a wave of heat') with a thoughtful discussion of fate vs. determinism. Fans of Coco will savor this tale and Sanmar’s occasional illustrations, which visualize Clara and Esteban’s journeys and the Lotería cards as the game progresses." — Publishers Weekly
|Recommended Age||10 - 13|
|Author||Karla Arenas Valenti|
|Publication Date||Sep 7, 2021|
|Publisher||Knopf Books for Young Readers|