“Mebbe being strong don’t mean being able to hit the hardest. Mebbe being strong means standin’ up even when there ain’t no hope of winning through strength of arms, you dig?”
Perilous Graves is a ten year old boy living in New Orleans, but his NOLA is rife with magic and fantastical creatures. His best friend, Peaches, is an unusual girl who is better able to travel between human reality and the dead side of town. When Perry, his little sister and Peaches are drawn into the hunt for nine missing songs that hold the city together, they are quickly in over their heads. Then their grandfather goes missing and they are more passionate than ever about solving this mystery. They must rely on wise women, zombie taxis and haints to gather information and weapons required for capturing these songs. On a similar path is Casey, a transgender person looking for his cousin who has disappeared, just after they learn that their graffiti art is able to come to life. Together these four must find a way to pull together the fabric of these two worlds.
This book is insanely imaginative and probably one of the most unique world building scenarios I’ve ever read. I enjoyed the heck out of it, but I guarantee you, I did not understand it all. There were many times where I was in way over my head and wondered how this ten year old was navigating this complex world. I think it will take a re-read or two to fully grasp the extent of the magic. What I did love was the unlikely hero story and the strength, kindness and open hearts of these kids. The idea of music and songs as living breathing entities was so fun, music is a powerful thing so it was lovely to see it used in that way.
Hope everyone has a safe and Happy Halloween!