No one knows what lies beyond the magical village door, but Ezomo is determined to find out. Mayonn Paasewe-Valchev’s Own Voices debut is an unforgettable coming-of-age story about friendship, family, and long-standing traditions. The power of storytelling comes to life in this novel perfect for fans of Erin Entrada Kelly, Tracey Baptiste, and Tae Keller.
There are three important laws in Ezomo’s village: Do not go to The Valley, do not go out at night, and never, ever, ever open the magical door that protects them all. But when Ezomo encounters the leopard believed to have killed his father, he and his two best friends embark on a journey that leads them past the boundaries set by their elders.
With his friends by his side, Ezomo chases after the leopard, certain that it has the power to cure all, and in the process he discovers the true history of his village, and that cautionary tales exist for a reason.
Mayonn Paasewe-Valchev’s debut novel balances a gripping adventure with themes of friendship, identity, grief, and resilience. Poignant and memorable, Ezomo’s world is layered throughout with rich details that will appeal to readers of Grace Lin and Kelly Barnhill.