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It feels like Rebecca Podos reached into my soul and pulled out my perfect book. Queer fantasy about Jews! A golem with they/them pronouns! And a story that's complicated and gripping and beautifully written, about family history and love and figuring out who you are. I was completely swept away.
Shana— From From Dust, a Flame
Rebecca Podos, Lambda Award-winning author of Like Water, returns with a contemporary Jewish fantasy of enduring love, unfathomable loss, and the power of stories to hold us together when it seems that nothing else can.
Hannah’s whole life has been spent in motion. Her mother has kept her and her brother, Gabe, on the road for as long as she can remember, leaving a trail of rental homes and faded relationships behind them. No roots, no family but one another, and no explanations.
All that changes on Hannah’s seventeenth birthday when she wakes up transformed, a pair of golden eyes with knife-slit pupils blinking back at her from the mirror—the first of many such impossible mutations. Promising that she knows someone who can help, her mother leaves Hannah and Gabe behind to find a cure. But as the days turn to weeks and their mother doesn’t return, they realize it’s up to them to find the truth.
What they discover is a family they never knew and a history more tragic and fantastical than Hannah could have dreamed—one that stretches back to her grandmother’s childhood in Prague under the Nazi occupation, and beyond, into the realm of Jewish mysticism and legend. As the past comes crashing into the present, Hannah must hurry to unearth their family’s secrets in order to break the curse and save the people she loves most, as well as herself.
Rebecca Podos is the Lambda Literary Award-winning author of YA novels, including The Mystery of Hollow Places, Like Water, and The Wise and the Wicked, and co-editor of the YA anthology Fools in Love. Find her online at www.rebeccapodos.com.
"From Dust, a Flame speaks to the importance of stories and how they connect us. A spellbinding tale of mystery and magic that explores grief, loss, and how the choices we make can echo across generations, this is the sort of book you’ll want to read again the moment you finish." — Kalyn Josephson, author of the Storm Crow duology
"A complicated, dark, richly woven story of generational trauma, stories, mothers and daughters, Jewish folklore, and the promises we make—and the promises we break—to protect the people we love. I was riveted from the first page to the last." — Katherine Locke, award-winning author of The Girl with the Red Balloon
"Smart and imaginative, deeply moving, and remarkably fun, From Dust, a Flame breathes fresh air into Jewish mythology. I loved it." — Elana K. Arnold, Prinz Honor-winning author of Damsel
“Filled with fantasy, superstition, and folklore, and with a uniquely Jewish spin, From Dust, a Flame ventures into daunting but fascinating territory. Will command attention.” — Jewish Book Council