Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley

Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley

Firekeeper's Daughter by Angeline Boulley book cover

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.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Racism and racial slurs
  • Sexual assault
  • Drug abuse, specifically meth
  • Drug addiction, specifically meth
  • Death of a friend
  • Death of a daughter
  • Death of a child
  • Death of a boyfriend
  • Death of an uncle
  • Murder-suicide, on-page
  • Gun violence
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The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White

The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankentstein by Kiersten White

Elizabeth Lavenza hasn’t had a proper meal in weeks. Her thin arms are covered with bruises from her “caregiver,” and she is on the verge of being thrown into the streets . . . until she is brought to the home of Victor Frankenstein, an unsmiling, solitary boy who has everything–except a friend.

Victor is her escape from misery. Elizabeth does everything she can to make herself indispensable–and it works. She is taken in by the Frankenstein family and rewarded with a warm bed, delicious food, and dresses of the finest silk. Soon she and Victor are inseparable.

But her new life comes at a price. As the years pass, Elizabeth’s survival depends on managing Victor’s dangerous temper and entertaining his every whim, no matter how depraved. Behind her blue eyes and sweet smile lies the calculating heart of a girl determined to stay alive no matter the cost . . . as the world she knows is consumed by darkness.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Ableism & ableist language
  • Classism
  • Misogyny
  • Slut shaming
  • Graphic physical, verbal & emotional abuse
  • Parental abandonment
  • Intimate partner abuse & violence
  • Nightmares
  • Self-sacrifice (on-page) & suicidal ideation mentioned
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Nonconsensual drugging
  • Graphic blood & gore depiction
  • Graphic dead bodies & body parts
  • Graphic physical injuries & wound descriptions
  • Graphic medical procedures & experiments
  • Emesis
  • Forced hospitalisation
  • Body horror
  • Grief & loss depiction
  • Death of a mother recounted
  • Death of an uncle (off-page)
  • Death of a friend
  • Death of a child
  • Death of a brother
  • Murder & attempted murder
  • Gun violence
  • Graphic strangulation
  • Hanging (off-page)
  • Fire (multiple scenes)
  • Kidnapping & captivity
  • Building collapse
  • Stalking
  • Graphic animal abuse (on-page) & animal death
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The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

It is 1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will be busier still.

By her brother’s graveside, Liesel’s life is changed when she picks up a single object, partially hidden in the snow. It is The Gravedigger’s Handbook, left behind there by accident, and it is her first act of book thievery. So begins a love affair with books and words, as Liesel, with the help of her accordian-playing foster father, learns to read. Soon she is stealing books from Nazi book-burnings, the mayor’s wife’s library, wherever there are books to be found.

But these are dangerous times. When Liesel’s foster family hides a Jew in their basement, Liesel’s world is both opened up, and closed down.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Racism, including blackface, and antiziganism (g slur)
  • Anti-semitism and Nazism (theme)
  • Ableism & ableist language
  • Parental abandonment & verbal abuse
  • PTSD & nightmares
  • Recreational drug use (smoking)
  • Emesis
  • Starvation
  • Gore depiction (dead bodies)
  • Death of a brother
  • Death of a child
  • Death of a father & uncle mentioned
  • Murder
  • Explosions, including air raids, and fire
  • Death by exposure to the cold
  • War themes* and battle scenes
  • Poverty themes
  • Bullying

*Set during WWII and discussed the Holocaust.

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The Perfect Assassin

The Perfect Assassin by K.A. Doore

Divine justice is written in blood.

Or so Amastan has been taught. As a new assassin in the Basbowen family, he’s already having second thoughts about taking a life. A scarcity of contracts ends up being just what he needs.

Until, unexpectedly, Amastan finds the body of a very important drum chief. Until, impossibly, Basbowen’s finest start showing up dead, with their murderous jaan running wild in the dusty streets of Ghadid. Until, inevitably, Amastan is ordered to solve these murders, before the family gets blamed.

Every life has its price, but when the tables are turned, Amastan must find this perfect assassin or be their next target.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Slavery mentioned
  • Cheating mentioned
  • Blood & gore depiction, including dead bodies
  • Physical injuries & illness
  • Death of an uncle & brother (off-page)
  • Death of a mother, wife & stepmother recounted
  • Murder & assassination (central theme)
  • Poisoning
  • Attempted murder by fire
  • Knife violence
  • Kidnapping
  • Dehydration depiction & death from dehydration mentioned
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The Adventure Zone: Here There Be Gerblins

The Adventure Zone, Vol. 1: Here There Be Gerblins by Clint McElroy, Griffin McElroy, Justin McElroy, Travis McElroy & Carey Pietsch

EJoin Taako the elf wizard, Merle the dwarf cleric, and Magnus the human warrior for an adventure they are poorly equipped to handle AT BEST, guided (“guided”) by their snarky DM, in a graphic novel that, like the smash-hit podcast it’s based on, will tickle your funny bone, tug your heartstrings, and probably pants you if you give it half a chance.

With endearingly off-kilter storytelling from master goofballs Clint McElroy and the McElroy brothers, and vivid, adorable art by Carey Pietsch, The Adventure Zone: Here There be Gerblins is the comics equivalent of role-playing in your friend’s basement at 2am, eating Cheetos and laughing your ass off as she rolls critical failure after critical failure

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Self-sacrifice
  • Self-inflicted wounds
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Blood & gore depiction and physical injuries
  • Death of a cousin
  • Death of a father
  • Death of an uncle
  • Murder & attempted murder
  • Explosion
  • Fire
  • Kidnapping & hostage situation
  • Graphic animal dead bodies
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My Fake Canadian Wife

My Fake Canadian Wife by M. Hollis

When Dora receives a letter from the immigration service in Canada saying she will be deported soon, as her visa is expiring, a friend suggests she marry a woman. Since she doesn’t currently have a girlfriend, faking a relationship might be her only option since she can’t muster the desire to return to school for advanced photograph studies.

Abby is a reserved librarian who seems enthusiastic about helping with the marriage plan. As the two girls get to know each other through dates in snowy Toronto and meeting Abby’s family for Christmas, Dora starts to wonder how much of this relationship they are faking and how much is real.

GoodreadsThe Story Graph

Trigger & Content Warnings:

  • Ableist language
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Cancer (sc’s uncle) recounted
  • Coming out themes
  • Death of an uncle recounted
  • Deportation (central theme)
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