This entertaining adventure story about Aztec gods introduces teens to Mexican indigenous traditions.
by José Agustín
Publication Date: October 31, 2023
Format: Trade Paperback
Imprint: Piñata Books
Not yet published
Alaín’s parents have a home in Tepoztlán, outside of Mexico City, and he invites a group of friends to spend the long Mexican Independence weekend there. They can’t wait to hang out, play video games and climb up to the Toltec pyramid that’s in the town!
Once there, the city kids meet some of the locals, including Pancho, who’s about their age, and his mother, a curandera who does cleansings. The young people are thrilled to be able to watch the indigenous ceremony that involves copal incense, candles and rubbing an egg along the body. But more exciting is Pancho’s invitation to explore a large cave he has recently discovered.
They set out early the next day and find the cave entrance without too much trouble, but soon things get weird. In the huge, dark cavern, they encounter an assortment of odd people. Before long, the friends realize they’ve accidentally entered Tepozteco’s belly, where the ancient Aztec gods live. Mother figure and the goddess of sustenance, Tonantzín, and Xiutecutli, the lord of fire, want to help the kids escape, but others, including the fearsome earth mother goddess Coatlicue, want to subject the intruders to a bloody sacrifice! Soon the gods agree to a test to decide whether they will live or die. Introducing teens to Mexico’s pre-Hispanic culture and religion, this adventure novel blending fantasy and myth races to an exciting conclusion sure to satisfy young readers.