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This is the story as it was told to me by Leandro the Mighty. 

For 400 years, Earth has been a barren wasteland. The few humans that survive scrape together an existence in the cruel city of Pocatel – or go it alone in the wilderness beyond, filled with wandering spirits and wyrms. They don’t last long. 

13 year-old pickpocket Leandro and his sister Gabi do what they can to forge a life in Pocatel. The city does not take kindly to Cascabel like them – the descendants of those who worked the San Joaquin Valley for generations. 

When Gabi is caught stealing precious fruit from the Pocatelan elite, Leando takes the fall. But his exile proves more than he ever could have imagined -- far from a simple banishment, his consciousness is placed inside an ancient drone and left to fend on its own. But beyond the walls of Pocatel lie other alebrijes like Leandro who seek for a better world -- as well as mutant monsters, wasteland pirates, a hidden oasis, and the truth. 

From Donna Barba Higuera, Newbery and Pura Belpré Medal-winning author of The Last Cuentista, comes another novel to astonish us and create a whole new imaginative world, that holds a mirror to our own.

Donna Barba Higuera grew up in Central California and now lives in the Pacific Northwest. She has spent her entire life blending folklore with her experiences into stories that fill her imagination. Donna is the author of El Cucuy Is Scared, Too!; the forthcoming The Yellow HandkerchiefLupe Wong Won’t Dance, winner of a Pura Belpré Honor and a PNBA award; and The Last Cuentista, winner of the Newbery Medal and the Pura Belpré Medal.

[STAR] “High-stakes adventure… Beautiful, imaginative writing fills this dystopian SF novel. Though it exposes cruelty and corruption, it raises up storytelling, culture, and kindness as stronger yet… A wondrous addition to any collection.” — Booklist (starred)

[STAR] “This heartfelt adventure signals hope for humanity, even in the aftermath of darkness.”— Kirkus (starred)

[STAR] “This stellar speculative narrative explores themes of identity across circumstance, centering an adolescent without structural power working to protect family and community.”— Publishers Weekly (starred)

[STAR] “An instant classic.”— School Library Journal (starred)

[STAR] “The captivating novel Alebrijes combines humanity and technology with imaginative splendor.” — Foreword (starred) “With its social and environmental commentary, this fast-paced and imaginative novel tackles issues of deception and control and leaves one with a sense of wonder that a single flap of a wing or a solitary voice can bring about unimaginable change.” — Horn Book


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