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Bad Cree

By Jessica Johns
Bad Cree by Jessica Johns digital book - Fable

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Publisher Description

In this gripping, horror-laced debut, a young Cree woman’s dreams lead her on a perilous journey of self-discovery that ultimately forces her to confront the toll of a legacy of violence on her family, her community and the land they call home.

"A mystery and a horror story about grief, but one with defiant hope in its beating heart." —Paul Tremblay, author of A Head Full of Ghosts and The Pallbearers Club

When Mackenzie wakes up with a severed crow's head in her hands, she panics. Only moments earlier she had been fending off masses of birds in a snow-covered forest. In bed, when she blinks, the head disappears.   

Night after night, Mackenzie’s dreams return her to a memory from before her sister Sabrina’s untimely death: a weekend at the family’s lakefront campsite, long obscured by a fog of guilt. But when the waking world starts closing in, too—a murder of crows stalks her every move around the city, she wakes up from a dream of drowning throwing up water, and gets threatening text messages from someone claiming to be Sabrina—Mackenzie knows this is more than she can handle alone.

Traveling north to her rural hometown in Alberta, she finds her family still steeped in the same grief that she ran away to Vancouver to escape. They welcome her back, but their shaky reunion only seems to intensify her dreams—and make them more dangerous.

What really happened that night at the lake, and what did it have to do with Sabrina’s death? Only a bad Cree would put their family at risk, but what if whatever has been calling Mackenzie home was already inside?

46 Reviews

Surprised Face with Open Mouth“I enjoyed this book as it was very much out of my genre comfort zone. It was haunting and moody and I enjoyed the characters. At times, the plot felt a bit slow for me though while the ending came quickly. I would recommend this read!”
Believable charactersEasy to readSuspensefulThrillingDark settingHauntingImmersive settingComing of ageSlow plot
Expressionless Face“Meh. I don’t hate this book, but I don’t really like it either. It felt boring with an immature writing style and plot. I am sooo burned out on books with creepy, supernatural dreams! Maybe I would’ve enjoyed it more as a physical book vs audio, but this fell really flat for me. I did enjoy the cultural aspects, strong family influence, and representation of a character using they/them pronouns though! And loved the dog😆❤️”
Diverse charactersLikable charactersEasy to readOriginal writingHauntingDidn't grab my attentionFlat charactersPredictable
Smiling Face with Heart-Eyes“I was enraptured from the start, and even though I'm a big whiny baby and thought this was scary, the writing was just... impeccable. I tried very hard not to binge this book and I found it was quite enjoyable for me to put it down and come back to it throughout this month. So many themes surrounding family and grief and... wow. It was just so relatable to me. I loved this so much. Will recommend this to everyone!”
Characters change and growBeautifully writtenThrillingDark setting
Thumbs Up“I really liked this book! It kept me on my toes nearly the entire time. I enjoy reading about different lore from different cultures and backgrounds. The movie in my head was certainly a thriller! 😊”
Believable charactersMulti-layered charactersOriginal charactersOriginal writingComplexSuspensefulCreepyMysticalRealistic setting
Smiling Face with Heart-Eyes“This was an incredible book. Highly addictive and absorbing. Beautiful language. Relatable characters with generation trauma most readers probably won't know personally, but will feel through the power of Johns' writing. A must read.”
Characters change and growDiverse charactersMulti-layered charactersBeautifully writtenEasy to readOriginal writingAddictiveThrillingBeautiful settingMystical

About Jessica Johns

JESSICA JOHNS is a Nehiyaw aunty and member of Sucker Creek First Nation in Treaty 8 territory in Northern Alberta. She is an interdisciplinary artist and winner of the 2020 Writers’ Trust Journey Prize.

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