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Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
The Freedom Race

The Freedom Race

The Dreambird Chronicles (Volume 1)

Lucinda Roy

Tor Books

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The Freedom Race, Lucinda Roy’s explosive first foray into speculative fiction, is a poignant blend of subjugation, resistance, and hope.

The second Civil War, the Sequel, came and went in the United States leaving radiation, sickness, and fractures too deep to mend. One faction, the Homestead Territories, dealt with the devastation by recruiting immigrants from Africa and beginning a new slave trade while the other two factions stood by and watched.

Ji-ji Lottermule was bred and raised in captivity on one of the plantations in the Homestead Territories of the Disunited States to serve and breed more “muleseeds”. There is only one way out—the annual Freedom Race. First prize, freedom.

An underground movement has plans to free Ji-ji, who unknowingly holds the key to breaking the grip of the Territories. However, before she can begin to free them all, Ji-ji must unravel the very real voices of the dead.

Written by one of today’s most committed activists, Lucinda Roy has created a terrifying glimpse of what might be and tempered it with strength and hope. It is a call to justice in the face of an unsettling future.

1 THE CRADLE


A convulsive wail catapulted Ji-ji awake. Oletto had woken to nurse. The wailing reached a crescendo. Each night her little brother woke at ten and two, guzzled from her mam’s teat like a drunkard, then fell back...

Praise for The Freedom Race

Praise for The Freedom Race

“Gut-wrenching read.... This powerful, riveting novel provides a glimpse into a nightmarish future that’s all too similar to our past.”—Buzzfeed

“Every now and then a work comes along that makes you wonder whether you are reading or dreaming. And you’re not sure it matters which.”—Nikki Giovanni

“Roy’s comprehensive worldbuilding and immersive language creates a tapestry.... Ji-ji’s journey is a story of resilience and hope rooted in a place where Octavia Butler and Rivers Solomon intersect with The Handmaid’s Tale.”—Booklist

“You ever have the feeling that if you don’t read something, you may be missing out on something momentous happening? . . . I got that vibe from the first page of The Freedom Race. It has a prescience about it in the tradition of Octavia Butler. . . . If ‘resilience’ was a book, it would be The Freedom Race.”—Maurice Broaddus, author of Buffalo Soldier

“Roy (The Hotel Alleluia) turns to speculative fiction for the first time with this lyrical, Afrofuturist hero’s quest set in the not-too-distant future. ...[Ji-Ji's] harrowing but profoundly spiritual quest for sovereignty against all odds impresses. Readers ... will appreciate both the tenacious heroine and Roy’s intricate prose stylings.”—Publishers Weekly

“The future Lucinda Roy calls up in The Freedom Race is a fierce, unsettling riff on our past and present. Instead of watching democracy evaporate and justice fail, Ms. Roy challenges us all to ge… More…

Praise for The Freedom Race

“Gut-wrenching read.... This powerful, riveting novel provides a glimpse into a nightmarish future that’s all too similar to our past.”—Buzzfeed

“Every now and then a work comes along that makes you wonder whether you are reading or dreaming. And you’re not sure it matters which.”—Nikki Giovanni

“Roy’s comprehensive worldbuilding and immersive language creates a tapestry.... Ji-ji’s journey is a story of resilience and hope rooted in a place where Octavia Butler and Rivers Solomon intersect with The Handmaid’s Tale.”—Booklist

“You ever have the feeling that if you don’t read something, you may be missing out on something momentous happening? . . . I got that vibe from the first page of The Freedom Race. It has a prescience about it in the tradition of Octavia Butler. . . . If ‘resilience’ was a book, it would be The Freedom Race.”—Maurice Broaddus, author of Buffalo Soldier

“Roy (The Hotel Alleluia) turns to speculative fiction for the first time with this lyrical, Afrofuturist hero’s quest set in the not-too-distant future. ...[Ji-Ji's] harrowing but profoundly spiritual quest for sovereignty against all odds impresses. Readers ... will appreciate both the tenacious heroine and Roy’s intricate prose stylings.”—Publishers Weekly

“The future Lucinda Roy calls up in The Freedom Race is a fierce, unsettling riff on our past and present. Instead of watching democracy evaporate and justice fail, Ms. Roy challenges us all to get over ourselves and join the race for freedom.”—Andrea Hairston, author of Will Do Magic for Small Change

“American magic-realism meets the outcome of the Second U.S. Civil War in a well-told, but brutally jolting, strangely prescient, and soul-haunting narrative.”—L. E. Modesitt, Jr., bestselling author of the Saga of Recluce series

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Lucinda Roy

LUCINDA ROY is an award-winning novelist, poet, and memoirist, and a lifelong advocate for diversity and inclusion. She’s lived and taught on three continents and is recognized for her keynotes on race and gender, creative writing, and education reform. Her commentaries and poetry have been published in numerous newspapers and journals, including USA Today, the Guardian, and the New York Times. She lives with her husband in Blacksburg, Virginia, where, as a distinguished professor, she teaches creative writing at Virginia Tech. For The Freedom Race, she relocated to speculative fiction because it allows her to imagine what form hope would take inside a damaged future world.

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Larry Edward Jackson

Lucinda Roy

Tor Books

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