Cover Image: Red Dove, Tell Truth to Darkness

Red Dove, Tell Truth to Darkness

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Member Reviews

Liked the writing style and MC, and loved the focus of this book. Write more about the Lakota, Sonia!
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this was a great sequel in the Red Dove series, it was a beautifully done story with a interesting Native American character that didn't feel like a stereotype.
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This story follows a Lakota girl Red Dove on her journey to try and figure out her place in the world with reservation and boarding school basically learn how to live in this new culture and try not to lose her old culture along the way.. I loved how the author integrated the language into the book and how she named the chapters really got my heart. I also appreciated the depiction of how hard things were for them after Native Americans were forced onto reservations. I did struggle a bit with what age group this is geared towards. The relationship with her and the doctor made me uneasy since it said she was 14. I also didn't just love some of the verbiage describing these girls clothes fitting. Sometimes the books was a little to fast paced I would have appreciated a little more background knowledge, but there aren't many books out here like this and I appreciate the story that is being told.
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Red Dove, Tell Truth to Darkness is the second book in a trilogy about Red Dove who is a half Lakota teenager who has run away from her residential school and joined Buffalo Bills traveling circus. This is a historical fantasy novel aimed at children aged 10-14 and is a pretty solid read. The plot is interesting and Red Dove is a personable character although at times her thought processes and reactions were a little repetitive. She is plucky and determined and a good character to follow. 

The story is timely and the writing is gorgeous and lyrical. It focuses on a lot of important topics and features several complicated characters and relationships. I felt like the plot was choppy at times and parts of it felt a little trite to me. I did enjoy it but it didn't wow me. I will likely read the sequel. 

Thanks to Netgalley and the Publisher for an Arc of this novel.
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Red Dove,  Tell truth to the darkness by Sonia Antaki ( Guildfest Productions Independant publisher)
Such a wonderful book telling the story of Red Dove a teenage Indian girl who joins wild buffalo Bill's travelling show to tell the truth about what really happened to her people. Whilst Buffalo Bill portrayed a different story.
Me and my 9 year old daughter read this book between us and she loved every minute of it. She told me she especially loved learning Red Doves language and her spiritual magic. The book was packed with excitement and action that every child loves. The story made her want to go to bed earlier to read more and to read it when she woke up just to see what happened next. The story is pack full of those hidden lessons and morals that us parents love to see , allowing the child to learn things without even knowing it. 
Having only read the second book in this trilogy I didn't in the least find it confusing or made to feel like we have missed something important.
Straight away we connected with the characters and the story. This book is brilliant for both boys and girls from aged 8 to young adult and not forgetting us adults who love reading this children's books we wished we had when we were younger.
We throughly enjoyed every minute of the wonderful tale and look forward to reading the other books from this author. Also posted Barnes&noble, waterstones, kobo, Google books  and amazon
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Red Dove, Tell Truth to Darkness
The Red Dove Trilogy: Book Two
by Sonia Antaki
Pub Date 20 Sep 2021 
 Guildfest Productions,  Independent Book Publishers Association (IBPA), Members' Titles
 Historical Fiction  |  Middle Grade  |  Teens & YA 


I am reviewing a copy of Red Dove, Tell Truth to Darkness the second book in The Red Dove Trilogy through Guildfest Productions, Independent Book Publishers Association and Netgalley:



The year is 1891, Red Dove Escapes her boarding school in order to to join Indigenous survivors of Wounded Knee to tour Europe with Buffalo Bill's Wild West show. 




In the first book in the series Red Dove, Listen to the Wind, her Lakota grandfather's medicine pouch taught her the value of empathy.  In this book Red Dove, Tell Truth to the Darkness, Red Dove must learn to tell the truth in order to protect herself and others.



If you have a middle grade reader who likes historical fiction, that has the ability to teach powerful lessons I highly recommend Red Dove Tell Truth to the Darkness.


I give this book five out of five stars!


Happy Reading!
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I appreciate that this book makes it easy to pick up even if you have not read the first book in the series. They do an excellent job of refreshing your memory and bringing the details of the previous tale in. I also appreciate that it is clearly grounded deeply in Lakota tradition and does not gloss over the harsh reality of how white colonizers treated Lakota and other tribes, whether it was on reservations, in boarding schools, or other places. The level of reading is accessible to mid- and upper elementary students. I did find the flashbacks to be disconcerting, often interrupting the flow of the story for me personally. Others may really enjoy the context they add.
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I received an eARC copy from the author and Guildfest Productions via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. 

I was mesmerized by the lovely cover and the representation of the Lakota people; that got me intrigued and curious to learn more. Seeing this one is book two in the Red Dove trilogy, I started the journey with book one, Red Dove, Listen to the Wind. 

In the second instalment, Red Dove, Tell Truth to Darkness, our protagonist, Red Dove, must find the strength and the courage to speak the truth, to voice her feelings and thoughts out without any fear of being misunderstood and neglected. She represents her people and all the other oppressed indigenous communities that suffered many injustices committed by the white people. 

Red Dove is coursing herself through life and a rapidly changing world. She is yet to find her place in that new world; she is yet to learn that world's ways, language, tradition, and understand and accept goals opposite what she imagined they would be. Red Dove is also a mixed-race girl growing up in the most unstable moment for herself, her people, and her surroundings. However, her guide and advisor, her Lakota grandfather, is by her side to encourage her to be honest and have faith in her knowledge and abilities. 

The plot itself is a struggle on its own, aside from Red Dove's life trials. A fast-paced story, full of twists and unexpected subplots, feels like a detailed history (well, historical fiction perhaps) of the clash between the natives and the conquerors. The lack of mutual understanding and diametrally different intentions led to bloodshed, the consequences of which we still experience to this day. The Buffalo Bill's travelling show in Europe was precisely the push Red Dove needed to understand who she is, what her place is, and what she needs to do to achieve the goal she set in front of herself - speak the truth, teach people what truly happened. 

On the character, Red Dove seems a bit slow in understanding the situations and the circumstances she finds herself in. There were occasions where there was no need to know the meaning of certain words in her native language to understand what is happening. Still, she needed more clarification. That, in my opinion, added unnecessary details and prolonged the actions and both the books themselves. 

Nevertheless, Red Dove perfectly echoes her ancestors and the challenges they were, and still are, facing.
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How could I resist that cover (even it is the second book in a trilogy and I haven't read the first one?)? That's one heck of a cute girl and pony.

We meet Red Dove at a residential school  in Dakota Territory in 1891 (and oof, isn't that timely with the recent discoveries of mass graves at North American residential schools). There's clearly some backstory I'm missing from the first book, but it's easy to pick up what's going on and the plot doesn't hang around. Red Dove is quickly on her way to Europe with Buffalo Bill's travelling show. 

I loved Red Dove's voice and her determined connection to her Lakota culture. This book doesn't shy away from the violence inflicted on the Lakota (and other indigenous peoples) by the white colonists and really highlights Red Dove's struggles to balance her identity and desire to tell the truth with her need to earn money to keep her family alive.

Red Dove's pony, Winchinchala, doesn't feature much in the story after they reach Europe but don't let the lack of horses put you off - this is wonderful historical fiction for younger readers with a wise and brave Lakota protagonist
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I liked the girl, Red Dove a lot.  She was brave and determined to live her life.  Probably would have loved this series when I was younger.  Some might not be ready for the cruelty that was touched on.   Recommend for kids - maybe 10 and up.
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In a time when we Americans are finally becoming aware of the injustices committed against our black and brown  citizens, this book is an ideal read for young people. It personalizes the native stories of the Little Bighorn and its subsequent aftermath in our indigenous communities.  Red Dove is brave but unsure of herself as she navigates a world changing rapidly from one which her people no longer command to now being controlled by anglo forces from afar.. She is also navigating early adulthood as a mixed race girl where her decisions have lasting consequences to both herself and her native family. Her guiding voice is that of her Lakota grandfather who admonishes her to always tell truth and have faith in her own abilities, a skill she gradually grows confident in.

The story is compelling to the end, unfolding events and locations rapidly. It introduces characters both sympathetic and not. Conflict arises from lack of cultural understanding coupled with antoginistic disinterest on the part of the conquerors. We are even now in the 21st century seeing the results of the misguided Indian boarding schools which attempted to destroy native culture. 

 Red Dove is a well drawn character who should be appealing to both male and female readers.. The late 1800's are a compelling time period and Red Dove's fictional insertion into Buffalo Bill's Western show a perfect  platform to introduce Red Dove to the larger American society so different from the world she grew up in. I look forward to reading the last of the trilogy to find out how she lands.
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Red Dove: Tell Truth to Darkness continues Red Dove's page-turning adventures in the dangerous American West and in Europe of the 1890s. You’ll find yourself rooting for this plucky Lakota teenager as she faces danger, stands up against injustice, and confronts the mysteries of her ancestors. Beautifully written and full of engaging characters, this is a tale to treasure. Anyone who’s ever found growing up and fitting in complicated, will find echoes of themselves in this book.
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