“Santa Muerte” (The Daniela Story #1) by Lucina Stone (2016)
Genre: Fantasy, Folk Tales, Fiction
Page Length: 200 pages (paperback edition)
THE YEAR IS 2030. IN A DRAMATIC, final attempt to free her inner demons, twenty-year-old Daniela Delgado tempts fate and winds up on a strange farm in 1923. With an olive complexion due to her Mexican/Italian heritage and a fresh pixie cut, she is mistaken for a “boy of color.” Her only shot at survival now is to play it cool, pose as “Danny,” and figure out how to get back home to her two, loving moms.
And then she meets Daphne—an abused, motherless farm girl in desperate need of freedom and a friend. Having escaped Daphne’s father, the two of them are now roaming the streets of New York City disguised as a young aristocrat and her male servant. They’re running out of money, and ideas. And Daniela thought living in 2030 was tough. (description from Goodreads)
Santa Muerte is a story about a girl named Daniela who is deeply depressed and unhappy with her life. She attempts suicide in order to free herself from her demons, but is instead transported back in time to the year 1923. From the very beginning of the novel, the plot is laid out into a giant puzzle which entices readers to solve the mysteries presented before them. The suspense factors in this novel definitely had me hooked.
While time travel is a glorious thing in most fantasy novels, 1923 is a dangerous time for Daniela because she’s a person of color. Stone doesn’t stray away from writing about the tense race relations of the time, but also touches on issues such as gender identity and mental illness in this book. Daniela is scared to be away from home, suspicious of everything and everyone, and knows that she has to be on top on things in order to survive this ordeal. I enjoyed the details Stone put into the novel to give it historical accuracy (ex. language, culture, society) and it made it feel if the reader was traveling back in time as well.
Santa Muerte is very fast paced and the time-travel and magic aspect of the novel is what makes it very entertaining. There is much mystery surrounding Daniela’s coven family that has yet to be revealed even after finishing the first book While we get sneak peeks of some characters back story, there are still a lot of questions to be answered.
While I had fun reading this novel my only complaints about the book was the point of view jumped around frequently, and I felt that there was too much happening in such a short period of time. Other than those things, this is a great fantasy novel!
Looking forward to seeing how the story will continue!
FTC Disclaimer: I received this book from the author in exchange for a fair and honest review.