Thursday, 2 July 2020

Daniel José Older

Author Website | ReviewsBibliography & Rights Information

Dactyl Hill Squad Series | Biblio. & Rights Info
Dactyl Hill Squad
Freedom Fire

Shadowshaper SeriesBiblio. & Rights Info
Shadowhouse Fall
Shadowhouse Fall
Ghost Girl in the Corner
Dead Light March

Bone Street Rumba Series | Biblio. & Rights Info
Half-Resurrection Blues
Midnight Taxi Tango
Battle Hill Bolero

Standalones| Biblio. & Rights Info
The Book of Lost Saints

Short FictionBiblio. & Rights Info
Salsa Nocturna Stories

AnthologiesBiblio. & Rights Info
Long Hidden: Speculative Fiction from the Margins of History (edited by Daniel Jose Older and Rose Fox)


Praise for Daniel José Older

.“Simply put, Daniel José Older has one of the most refreshing voices in genre fiction today.”

–Saladin Ahmed,
author of Throne of the Crescent Moon





“This story about ancestors, ghosts, power, and community has art and music at its core; Sierra’s drawing and painting turn out to be tools for spirit work. Sierra’s Puerto Rican with African and Taíno ancestors; her community is black and brown, young and old, Latin and Caribbean and American. Sometimes funny and sometimes striking, Older’s comfortable prose seamlessly blends English and Spanish. Warm, strong, vernacular, dynamic—a must.”

Starred review!

“What makes Older’s story exceptional is the way Sierra belongs in her world, grounded in family, friends, and an awareness of both history and change. Her goal is to go deeper into that history and, by so doing, effect change of her own. Sierra’s masterful adaptability is most apparent in her language, which moves among English and Spanish, salsa and rap, formality and familiarity with an effortlessness that simultaneously demonstrates Older’s mastery of his medium.”

Publishers Weekly
Starred review!

“Magnificent…[and] elegantly understated…Sierra [is] a compelling, refreshing hero…Older is able to infuse SHADOWSHAPER with the spirit of Brooklyn in the summer, where the possibility of magic hangs shimmering in the air. This is a world that readers cannot help wanting to live in and, as with all great urban fantasies, harboring a suspicion that perhaps we already do.”

New York Times Book Review
Reviewed by Holly Black, the bestselling and award-winning author of the Spiderwick Chronicles

“As with any Older book, the prose sizzles with neon visuals and hums with poetry and music. Shadowshaper invites you to read it quickly.”

Fantasy Literature

“Infused with a plethora of imagination, SHADOWSHAPER has an intriguing supernatural premise wrapped in rich cultural details. It works because Older not only gives readers a diverse cast, but he stays true to their background, language, and community, lending an authenticity to his work. The supernatural art and mythological elements are interestingly woven and add multiple layers to the story. If you’re a YA urban fantasy reader looking for something creative and different, try SHADOWSHAPER on for size.”

RT Book Reviews
4 stars!

“Sierra is a tough, confidant, body-positive female protagonist of Puerto Rican descent, proud of her ‘fro and her curves…Dialogue is fast paced and authentic to Sierra’s Brooklyn neighborhood, which is vividly described. Readers will find someone to whom they can relate in her diverse group of friends… Excellent diverse genre fiction in an appealing package.”

School Library Journal
Starred review!

“For adventure seekers in search of a culturally robust fright fest, SHADOWSHAPER awaits. “

–School Library Journal
Audio book starred review!

“Smart writing with a powerful message that never overwhelms the terrific storytelling.”

Starred review!

“This book feels crafted precisely for the generation it is meant to serve…It’s exactly the kind of title Walter Dean Myers charged his peers to pen at the onset of his career and the kind of narrative he was still imploring publishers to fete in the twilight of his life, one that takes young readers, their unique needs and their racial and cultural realities seriously. SHADOWSHAPER would make him proud.”

The Washington Post

“SHADOWSHAPER is a unique young-adult fantasy that stands out not only for its diverse characters but the depth of its story. Older has given readers plenty of thrills and mystery to keep the pages turning, but his novel sings loudest when he explores the power of the past. We are all products of those who came before us; but rarely do authors make that so clearly part of the plot as Daniel José Older has done. Exciting, thoughtful and extremely compelling, SHADOWSHAPER is a novel that invites readers to think deeply of their own family secrets and the lengths they will go to uncover the truth of who they are.”


“SHADOWSHAPER introduces us to Sierra Santiago, a heroine as memorable as Hermione Granger and as admirable as Katniss Everdeen…As breathtaking as the fantasy elements are, Sierra’s tale is grounded in real-world setting that will be appealing to even the most reluctant fantasy readers. The strength of Older’s tale is in his meticulous attention to the details of the life of a brown-skinned, natural-haired Puerto Rican teenage girl… This is a world that will stay with readers long after the last page.”

Los Angeles Times

“I really enjoyed this book! Older vividly brings to life Sierra’s neighborhood and family, and has a gift for dialogue that makes his characters feel like real teenagers. The shadowshaper magic system is refreshingly original…I don’t think I’ve ever read such a good, gritty YA urban fantasy.”

Muggle Net

“Sierra herself is a fantastic heroine…[SHADOWSHAPER] was a bang-up adventure with a whole lot of brains, heart, and wicked cool imagery. I’ll be seeking out Older’s adult-market books and stories soon.”

“Talk about starting with a bang…Like his previous works, Half Resurrection Blues and Salsa Nocturna, SHADOWSHAPER is frightening and funny, with language that truly transports. And in Sierra, he offers up a strong, brown heroine who’s at once sure-footed and startled, reveling in her newfound strength and fearing what exactly it might cost her.”

Barnes & Noble
“8 Must-Read Diverse YA Fantasies”

“The existence of a young adult novel with an afro-latina teen girl for a protagonist is already reason to cheer, but when you add the fantastical elements from authoer Older’s imagination, you have a masterpiece that defies the status quo in surprising and pioneering ways.”


“80 Books Every Person Should Read”

“SHADOWSHAPER isn’t just a story written to be any old book at the store; it’s for every young person of color who doesn’t see themselves on the bookshelf. It’s for every kid who got told he or she wasn’t good enough, and couldn’t possibly be the hero of the story. It’s for the adults today who didn’t have Sierra there for them when they were growing up. Older uses every page of this book not only to tell the story of a young woman of color coming into her power, but to show every other young man and woman of color that, yes, you, too, are worthy of stories, and you, too, can be the hero of your story. . .That beating heart is truly what makes SHADOWSHAPER so amazing.”

Strange Horizons Reviews

“Daniel José Older is a cult favorite in YA fantasy, but if I were a betting woman, I’d say that SHADOWSHAPER will thrust him into a far bigger spotlight. SHADOWSHAPER is unique, and I don’t say that lightly. It’s set in a Brooklyn summer so lushly depicted I swear you’ll almost start sweating.”

“15 Of June 2015’s Best YA Books”

“This book feels like a living, breathing love letter to Brooklyn. Since finishing this story, I always give the murals I pass a second glance just in case.”

“Reading My Way Through Brooklyn”

“[Shadowshaping] is a magic unlike anything I’ve ever encountered in YA. Sierra’s powers work perfectly with Older’s unparalleled ability to lay bare the complex relationships between communities and families, cultural histories and personal ones, and the magic art that binds them all. Older has not only raised the bar in the way that the fantasy part of urban fantasy is written, but also in the way that the urban is so realistically represented. I cannot recommend this book enough. All I can say is prepare your Book Hangover Kit because I guarantee that Sierra is sure to stick around in your head long after you’ve turned the last page.”

“The Best Books of 2015 So Far”

“Daniel José Older’s SHADOWSHAPER was my first experience of the writer’s long fiction and won’t be my last. Great stuff!”

2015 Recommended Reading, Jonathan Strahan

“If books were rated like video games, I would give SHADOWSHAPER by Daniel Jose Older an “E” for everyone. Though it is technically a young adult novel, it is also an engaging read for those well past adolescence… SHADOWSHAPER is a gem of a book that should rest easy on most any bookshelf. It is available at bookstores and online right now.”

Amsterdam News (New York)

“[Older] writes what could easily be called fantasy, much of Older’s stories reflects the detail and rhythms of real life, whether his own or the lives of others, in small details and broad strokes, which is precisely why his writing is so strong and relevant for readers.”


“Beautiful writing and a wonderful plot make this book a must-read…This is the book that I’ll be shoving into everyone’s hands this summer.”

Trident Booksellers

“Older’s fantasy makes the ordinary extraordinary, touching on social issues while managing to be genuinely suspenseful.”

Cosmopolitan Magazine
“18 Scary Books That Are Totally Worth the Nightmares They’ll Give You”

“[Not since] Kristin Cashore’s Lady Fire, did a female protagonist make me fall in love with her so easily and so entirely… The kind of hero I wish I could see more of in YA fantasy…So meticulously, wonderfully done.”

The Book Wars

“I love the characters in SHADOWSHAPER moving to self-acceptance and self-knowledge, that acceptance of one’s own beauty is part of DJO’s message. I love that Sierra and Robbie are artists, people who create. I love that every single character is authentic and individual.”

Insidious Intent

“In SHADOWSHAPER, Daniel Jose Older has created a YA novel that is exciting, absorbing, funny, creepy, and above all, absolutely fresh.  He writes with verve and a fine ear for dialogue and character.  His heroine, Sierra, is feisty, vulnerable, and believable. I’d want her on my side in any fight, verbal, physical, or supernatural.  One of the best YAs I’ve read this year.”

—Delia Sherman,
Mythopoeic Fantasy Award-winning author of The Freedom Maze

“Sierra is the heroine we’ve been waiting for — a pretty, brown-skinned Latina artist who is smart, strong, inventive, and unsure. Daniel Jose Older is one of my favorite new voices, and I can’t wait to see what he (and Sierra) come up with next.”

—Anika Noni Rose,
star of The Princess and the Frog

“In Older’s stories, the dead are as much a part of life as the living. The language is playful and Older’s love for storytelling comes through on every page.”

—Roxanne Gay,
The New York Times bestselling author of An Untamed State

“Nothing is what it seems in Daniel Jose Older’s dazzlingly inventive reimagined Brooklyn, where shadows turn to wraiths and graffiti comes alive. Funny, frightening, and always surprising, SHADOWSHAPER is a delight for readers of all ages.”

—Sarah McCarry,
author of All Our Pretty Songs and About a Girl


“Older paints a compelling picture of contemporary life for black and brown teens in cities: Afro-Latinx Sierra and her friends deal with police harassment and brutality, both on the streets of Bed-Stuy and at school, themes that feels especially timely and relevant.”

Starred review!

“Older deepens the mythology of shadowshaping in this installment, subtly showcasing how cultural heritage, even the trauma of ancestors, can become a power to wield rather than a burden to bear, not to mention how the history of colonization bleeds into contemporary culture. … The expanding cast of well-rounded characters, clearly choreographed action, and foreshadowing of installments to come will have fantasy fans eagerly awaiting more of this dynamic, smart series.”

Starred review!

“Older has upped the ante with this second installment. This entry adds a layer of social activism that is refreshing and timely. The crew challenges their white AP history teacher about how she is approaching the topic of slavery. Many of the protagonists experience conflicts with the police and are able to resist. For a change of pace, those who enjoyed Angie Thomas’s The Hate U Give may want to check out this fantasy title.”

School Library Journal
Starred review!

“Older’s second Shadowshaper Cypher title expands the startling paranormal world, while also confronting the real-world difficulties they face on a daily basis, from racism to police brutality to school hostility. The inclusion of black West Indian/Afro Latinx culture and transformative friendships throughout this book lends a fascinating and refreshing element to a series that already feels wonderfully distinctive, and the inclusion of new and intricate mythologies is sure to keep readers entranced. Newcomers owe it to themselves to read this series in order to appreciate the unique magic in all its forms.”

RT Book Reviews

“Everything I loved about Shadowshaper is found in SHADOWHOUSE FALL, but sharper and fiercer, pushed harder and farther. … [The] relationships are complex and full of friction, and the sparks they give off illuminate important facets of the story.”

Amal El-Mohtar,
Hugo Award-winning
author of The Honey Month, for NPR

“A stunning sequel that will leave fans clamoring for book three. Spray paint- and Sharpie-wielding teens continue the battle between good and evil, light and dark, even as they wonder just which is which in this spectacular sequel to Shadowshaper.”

Shelf Awareness

“Moving past origin story, this sequel does its due diligence in filling in gaps and expanding the cast while presenting a more focused and emotionally developed plot, as Sierra pursues a new love interest and explores the many meanings and consequences of family.”

The Horn Book

“Shadowhouse Fall adds depth to the fantasy world first introduced in Older’s acclaimed first YA novel, Shadowshaper. Perhaps more remarkable is how the second book in the series plugs into urgent conversations about racialized violence, white supremacy, and youth activism.”

Latinxs in Kid Lit

“This is a fantasy novel about living in 21st-century America. There are some ugly, ugly things happening, but there are also courageous people who are pushing back against them. Shadowhouse Fall doesn’t attempt to escape from the reality many of its readers are living in but instead works to inform, empower, and entertain them. That’s a lot for one book to accomplish, and Older does it very well.”


“Everything Older excelled at in the first book is back and then some, with plenty of righteous teen anger blended into a larger story about, well, the future of the world. Most importantly, protagonist Sierra continues to be a perfect combination of power and pathos, as she leads the members of Shadowhouse into the fight of their lives and a new chapter in this ongoing series . . . Daniel José Older may be writing about urban sorcerers in the city, but his teens are relatable to any young person who has ever desired to have their voice heard, their identity respected and their dreams realized. We have always drawn lines between good and evil in fiction; Older demands that we look outside and see them on our streets as well. Keep an eye on this author; he’s taking us all to places that we really must go.”


“In 2017, there were many YA SF and fantasy authors who showed how creating characters who mirror their readers (and our society) can make a great story even better. Daniel José Older’s SHADOWHOUSE FALL continued the thrilling adventures of Afro-Latina Sierra and her Scooby band of teen warriors who battle nefarious magical forces while simultaneously navigating the indignities of high school metal detectors and a justice system that skews heavily in favor of corrupt cops. Older peppers the narrative with Spanish language references (and slang) that fit right in with this smart and determined crowd of gay, straight, white, brown, black, living, and dead characters.”

Locus (Colleen Mondor)
“YA in 2017”

“I recommended Shadowshaper and I strongly recommend SHADOWHOUSE FALL. It’s exciting, original, and honest, all written with power, imagination and wit. Now I’m pacing the floor waiting for the next installment.”

Fantasy Literature


“In a word: bueno.”



“As per usual, Older writes captivating characters racing through a heart-pounding story that’s permeated with lush cultural immersion and fiery social commentary.”



“Carlos is a winning protagonist, with a murky past, troubled present, and smart, smart-ass narrative voice. Older’s magical New York City is fresh and richly envisioned, a gritty and genuine urban setting rife with strange forces and thoroughly enlivened by the fixers, dealers, and supernatural creatures who inhabit it. Fans of urban fantasy will greatly enjoy this entirely lively novel.”

Publisher’s Weekly

“The hard-boiled noir is filled with delightfully witty and profane sarcasm, even when the classic style goes through a bit of generational reappropriation in describing twenty-first century New York culture…But for everyone, this is a fun, smart bit of paranormal noir, with more to come as the series continues.”


“Older brings us a fresh take on the urban fantasy genre in this absorbing tale of a half-dead, half-living hero. With a unique character in Carlos and the mixed world of living and dead beings that Carlos inhabits, Older balances flavor and colorful writing with a well-crafted, inventive plot. All of the side characters — including the dead ones! — surrounding Carlos and their amusing banter only add to this entertaining story.”

RT Book Reviews

“Set in contemporary Brooklyn and featuring a diverse cast of characters, the novel offers a fresh voice in the urban fantasy genre. Carlos is an engaging and entertaining protagonist as he battles destructive imps and a powerful sorcerer while also trying to reclaim memories of his former human life that were erased when he was reborn. The conclusion smoothly paves the way for an anticipated sequel.”

The Washington Post

“And that’s really what’s terrific about the version of the city that Daniel Jose Older conjures here — it’s not just a richly detailed and diverse place, but a place where worlds collide, and people who are caught in the middle can meet up and have a beer, and discover how to make the best of not quite fitting in.”

“Nothing about this book is dead, though; it’s urban fantasy that actually feels relevant and alive.”


“Vividly realized.”

B&N Sci-Fi and Fantasy Blog
“The Best Science-Fiction and Fantasy of 2015”

This book single-handedly brought me back to the urban fantasy genre…Older gave me a urban fantasy that spoke to real issues of gentrification and identity while still holding on to old fantasy mainstays like world-ending plots and half-dead henchmen. I love that Brooklyn breathes like it does in the novel. I love that all of the important people in the book aren’t white men. I love that people curse in a realistic manner. I love that the main character’s surrogate family network is as tight as it is.”

“The Best Books of 2015 So Far”

“A dark urban fantasy that explores the world between dead and living. . .[an] engaging beginning to a promising new series.”

“The 32 Best Fantasy Books of 2015”

“Older’s use of a poem by Chicana feminist writer, thinker, poet and activist Gloria Azaldua in this work is so beautifully and  passionately conveyed. …An insightful read if you are looking for self-help and/or spiritual motivation. It has twists and turns that keep you guessing and cool superpowers you wished you possessed.”

Black Girl Nerds

“Older’s storytelling is like a story spontaneously spun while sitting on a stoop in Bed-Stuy. It’s gritty and doesn’t pull any punches. His writing bounces around great little turns of phrase that just make you grin. The end of the book is left open for a sequel and I hope Older delivers. Who can say no to ghosts fighting the forces of darkness in Brooklyn? I’d be more than willing to take another trip down to Older’s Brooklyn. You might consider a visit too.”

SF Signal

” Daniel’s a powerful voice in the genre community, a bright, smart writer who brings a unique perspective to Science Fiction and Fantasy…As a debut novel, Half-Resurrection Blues is triumph for Daniel José Older. A story filled with life and vigor (despite the ‘living’ status of many of the characters) and energy, and as the start of a series, it most certainly succeeded in that all important job of making me want to read more.”


“[Older] writes like he plays music, with a lyrical quality that is nearly impossible to tear yourself away from… I can’t recommend this book, or this author, highly enough. This is what urban fantasy is all about, and when you start this, allow some time to finish, because you won’t want to come up for air until you do.”

My Bookish Ways

“It’s hard to classify HRB; it’s a supernatural thriller, it’s a mystery novel, it’s a romance in places; but what it is is fun and what it has is a great character in Delacruz. Older’s writing is so accessible – his narration on the audio is a delight – it’s telling that he is the man who created this world and these people within it, because his tone is just perfect…The noir tone is a delight and while I compared this to Sookie Stackhouse and others, in the end this is a universe that is quite unique. And heartily recommended.”

Following the Nerd

“I found it to be a surprisingly quick read, which is a definite testament to the flow and fast pacing of the story. It grabs hold of you and doesn’t let go. I am really looking forward to further novels from Older. As such, I am giving this title 5 Stars. There wasn’t much I could see that would have improved the story for me.”

Wicked Little Pixie

“Older puts just the right amount of twist on familiar tropes, and brings a fresh voice to an exciting urban fantasy world…If there’s one element that shines above the others, it’s voice. This is prime “thrillaminut” urban fantasy, quick and easy to read, and the prose just slides. Older balances a first-person present tense narrative with great characterization and an immensely liable hero…Lovers of urban fantasy will dig this fresh, fast book told with a great voice.”

Adventures in Sci-Fi Publishing

“I love the world Daniel José Older creates in his urban fantasy Half-Resurrection Blues. I love the feel of Brooklyn; the sounds, the sights, the sensibilities; the descriptions of the smell of cigar smoke, booze, and food from the bodegas, sushi bars and food carts. This Brooklyn is full of life — and full of ghosts. . .This is a new kind of urban fantasy for me, and I’m liking it.”

Fantasy Literature

“”Well enough written, different enough to have a fresh feel if you haven’t overdosed on urban fantasy recently.”

Critical Mass / Don D’Amassa

“Older’s HALF-RESURRECTION BLUES is a smooth launch into what promises to be a highly enjoyable series…it’s a good example of how satisfying the genre can be… Carlos is drive, courageous and hard to put down, relating HALF-RESSURECTION BLUES in an engaging, first person narrative…The prose is smooth and sometimes lyrical and overall this is a solid, satisfying read.”

Urban Fantasy Magazine

“Half-Resurrection Blues is so many things at once: a mystery, a suspense, a supernatural thriller. The world Older builds is familiar and alien, and it’s so vividly imagined and rendered that the reader believes the contradictions, embraces them, loves this world of ghosts, demons, magic workers, and half-alive men and women. This is a fantastic beginning to what will surely be a fantastic series.”

—Jesmyn Ward,
National Book Award-winning Author of Salvage the Bones

Daniel José Older is a genre unto himself— never has a story of the half-dead sizzled with so much life. Half-Resurrection Blues is part spooky, part noir, with humor always around the corner as Older’s half-dead investigator lays bare the human—and not so human–condition. This is the book you’ve been looking for you didn’t even know existed.”

—Tananarive Due,
American Book Award-winning author of The Living Blood

“Older’s spectral noir is as real as fresh blood and as hard as its New York streets. A Lou Reed song sung with a knife to your throat.”

—Richard Kadrey,
The New York Times bestselling author of the Sandman Slim series

“In Half Resurrection Blues, Older has created Noir for the Now; equal parts bracing, poignant, compassionate and eerie. A swinging blues indeed.”

—Nalo Hopkinson,
Nebula Award-winning author of Brown Girl in the Ring

“A damn good read. All the best dark urban fantasies are about matters of life and death. Half-Resurrection Blues takes that to the limit. A hard-core, hard-driving fantasy, following the adventures of a most singular man who is both dead and alive and tasked with solving the problems of the dead and the living and everything in between. Except, of course, nothing is ever that simple. Daniel José Older takes aim at a whole bunch of familiar targets, and hits them hard in new and interesting ways.”

—Simon R. Green,
The New York Times bestselling author of the Nightside series

“Daniel Jose-Older is here to save your soul. But he might just terrorize it first. Half-Resurrection Blues is the first novel of a fabulous talent, one who mixes the spectral and the intellectual with skill. This book is smart and gripping, funny and insightful. It kicks in the door waving the literary .44. Be warned, this man is not playing.”

—Victor LaValle,
American Book Award-winning author of Big Machine and The Devil in Silver

“With a series named Bone Street Rumba, how could this not intrigue me? . .Older lovingly captures the vibrant energy of multiethnic blue collar Brooklyn which is hanging on in the face of hipster gentrification. Delacruz, who straddles the border between life and death, is a wonderful guide through both mortal New York and the Underworld. Best of all, I finished the first book just in time for the release of the second: Midnight Taxi Tango. Excuse me while I get back to reading!”

—Rick Riordan,
The New York Times bestselling author of The Percy Jackson series



“Older brings an elemental street vibe to his urban magic, adding an earthiness and texture that really makes his work stand out. Readers looking for stories that deftly mix magic with contemporary Brooklyn culture will enjoy this series.”

–Publishers Weekly

“Vivid descriptions, edgy, amusing banter and poetic language make up Older’s latest novel. . .With a cleverly written, imaginative plot and a cast of otherworldly, colorful characters set in the streets of New York City, MIDNIGHT TAXI TANGO takes urban fantasy to a thrilling new level.”

RT Book Reviews
4.5/4.5 Stars, Top Pick!

“Any author, regardless of genre, must build a world for us to inhabit, and Daniel José Older truly excels at this in MIDNIGHT TAXI TANGO, creating a New York City filled with ghostly mayhem. The dialogue is also pitch perfect for his full cast of characters, as he weaves together this Urban Fantasy tale. You’ll want to start with book one, HALF-RESURRECTION BLUES, as plotlines continue. But it will be well worth it, I swear!”

RT Book Reviews
Seal of Excellence

” I loved Shadowshaper for upending the usual hierarchies of worth — celebrating rap, graffiti and salsa as crucial art forms, and showing a deep suspicion of institutions and authorities. And I was delighted to find all the above in Midnight Taxi Tango, and something more: a deep vein of pain and rage that Older never diminishes, mocks or apologizes for. I’m also happy to say I had no trouble following the characters or plot, and that the exposition is pretty seamless. . .I could read a novel-length weather report written in the voices of Older’s characters. Their cadences are musical and real, their thoughts unflinching and sometimes unabashedly graceless, and to see them fight and figure themselves and others out over the course of terse stand-offs and grudging conversations is wonderful.”


“[I] love the details of this world, the way Older creates these pockets of magic in the middle of a concrete, fully realized mundane world. Whether it’s a research librarian or the Burgundy Bar, which, unbeknownst to its owners and bartenders, is actually a ghost-cop-bar, Older sells me completely on the idea of a world filled with the unknown and the magical right next to us. . .All in all, I think Midnight Taxi Tango is a great follow-up to Half-Resurrection Blues. I’m eager to see where the series goes from here.”

Fantasy Literature

Midnight Taxi Tango is the second book of the vividly imaginative Bone Street Rumba series. I can honestly say I’ve never encountered an urban fantasy quite like this, and I said as much in my review of the first book last year, which I enjoyed immensely! I knew as soon as I was finished reading HALF-RESURRECTION BLUES that I wanted to continue this cool and unique series. . .I’m too invested in Carlos’ story to stop now so I definitely have plans to continue. I’m curious about the wider story arc, and I have to admit a part of me is really looking forward to see Carlos and his pals rain hell down on the NYCOD!”


“The second entry in Older’s urban fantasy series is intense and satisfying. What’s more, he narrates it well.”

Audio book review

“There is so much I loved about this book. . .One thing that really stands out to me as a reader is that white isn’t the default race in this novel, and it makes for a markedly different environment than the standard urban fantasy.  The voices are strong, powerful, and, to me as a reader, unique.”

Libromancer’s Apprentice

“MIDNIGHT TAXI TANGO is a dark, gritty story that should appeal to urban fantasy and horror readers. Daniel José Older has a fresh and distinctive voice, one that is almost poetical. The characters are quite realistic despite their very supernatural abilities and settings.  I liked the first book, HALF-RESURRECTION BLUES, but I absolutely love MIDNIGHT TAXI TANGO as Daniel José Older hits this one out of the park. Highly recommended!”

Kwips and Kritiques

“Older has a voice that I just love, and this series is everything I love about urban fantasy. Added to that, Older is unapologetically diverse, and I love that. I love the breath of fresh air, and the color he brings to the genre.”

Bookworm Blues

“Stayed up way too late last night reading Midnight Taxi Tango by [Daniel José Older]. What a book–noir-y, atmospheric, gripping, and just very good.”

John Green,
New York Times bestselling author of The Fault in Our Stars

“Pulling off three alternating first-person narrators is incredibly difficult. Older makes it look easy. . .If you like urban fantasy, especially fantasy with a wonderfully diverse cast of characters, you should check out this series.”

—Rick Riordan,
The New York Times bestselling author of The Percy Jackson series


“Older populates his paranormal Brooklyn with colorful everyday magic in a world dense with ghosts, undead, conjurers and spirit workers, orishas, and other supernatural beings and attuned humans. Fans of gritty urban fantasy and earthy characters will celebrate this satisfying conclusion to a unique series.”

Publishers Weekly
Starred review!

“Vibrant storytelling full of lyrical, poetic language and descriptions makes up Older’s latest novel in his Bone Street Rumba series. Older’s beautiful mosaic of diverse and distinctive characters, written with familiarity and warmth and placed within culturally rich urban settings, is the treasure of this story.”

RT Book Reviews

“It’s a timely and essential series from one of the most insightful urban fantasy writers I’ve encountered. Recommended.”

Fantasy Literature

“With themes of memory, forgiveness, atonement and love threaded throughout, this series is made all the more special. And with this last book, Daniel José Older turned things truly epic.”

The Book Smugglers

“I really enjoy Older’s writing. Like, would-probably-stand-in-line-in-the-cold-for-a-midnight-release-because-my-love-for-his-characters-will-keep-me-warm, kind of enjoyment. … This is the series you need to read. It deals with everything from colonialism, to racism, to transphobia, to body positivity, and much more–and it does all of this without once missing a beat.”

The Book Wars

“Older’s New York is a vibrant city filled with ghosts, the half-dead, and strange supernatural beings. His rich and interesting characters are easy to care about and invest time in getting to know.”

Pop Culture Beast

“There is so much room on Bone Street for more stories, a testament to the richness of the characters.”

Thodestool Fiction Editing

“This is a series completely unlike anything else you’ve read before, and very much worth checking out.”

Unbound Worlds

“My biggest criticism of the book, and the series as a whole, is that I want more.”

Cannonball Read


“SALSA NOCTURNA [is a] wonderful book of noir ghost stories. Fresh, smart, and just excellent…It’s funny and wise and keeps you turning pages and the prose is truly fresh. It’s so rare to read something that doesn’t sound like anything you’ve read before, and so invigorating.”

—John Green,
#1 NYT bestselling author of The Fault in Our Stars

Older gracefully draws together the stories of a young man who finds an unnerving set of dolls at his girlfriend’s home, a child abuse survivor out for revenge, and serial killers both spectral and human, securing himself a place among the rising stars of the genre.”

Publisher’s Weekly

“There is such musicality and electricity in Daniel José Older’s Salsa Nocturna. His stories might best be characterized as ghost noir, set in the streets of New York, featuring the world we know and one just beyond our imagining. In Older’s stories, the dead are as much a part of life as the living. The language is playful and Older’s love for storytelling comes through on every page.”

The Nation

“Older is a talented writer, subtle enough to hint and allow the reader to make connections on their own. He creates a universe where the supernatural interweaves with everyday life despite restrictions… Older’s collection overall paints a stunning city where power actually has little to do with the fantastic.”

“I was absolutely blown away. If you think you’re done with urban fantasy, you should reconsider, because NO ONE does it like him. His Latin infused fantasy is sinuous, creepy, dark, tender, and just plain fantastic. I got all that from short stories, so I can’t wait to dig in to his first full length novel!”

SF Signal

“Daniel José Older captures all of the dark recesses of the human heart and puts them to the page, all the while capturing the blinding light of the human spirit. Salsa Nocturna broke my heart, captivated me, and elated me in equal turns and my only complaint is that it ended. You’ll savor every word, then you’ll most likely read it again, because it’s flawless.”

My Bookish Ways

“Delicate, exhilarating, and sweet…Daniel Jose Older captures all of the dark recesses of the human heart and puts them to the page, all the while capturing the blinding light of the human spirit. You’ll savor every word, then you’ll probably read it again, because it’s flawless.”

My Bookish Ways

“There are moments I laughed out loud because they were so funny and so authentic. In some ways, I was jealous, unsure that I’d ever been so real in my own writing. And I write nonfiction! In other moments, Older’s stories made me want to cry out of frustration or longing to experience love the way he’d written it between those pages.

Vouched Books

“To me, every one of these single stories is like a cool tune that starts off in a steady, melancholic and low key rhythm of a blues, then jazzes up the mood with some well placed beats and chords and finally goes all funky, wrecking tear-jerking havoc. It’s not all the same, of course. Each story has it’s own distinct song.”

—Vanilla Moon
(a Romanian review blog)


“The most important, essential anthology to be published in 2014 is Long Hidden.”


Reviews for the Dactyl Hill Squad Series


Readers will adore Magdalys Roca, who becomes the de facto leader of the orphans, thanks to her unique ability to telepathically communicate with the dinosaurs.”

The New York Times

“In this series opener, Older (Shadowshaper) weaves historical fact with dinosaur-inspired fancy to create a society in which people fly on the backs of pterodactyls, conduct naval warfare with mosasaurs, and use tyrannosaurs as destructive weapons. Rooted in real events and attitudes, and appended with facts about the time, this fast-paced adventure makes for a memorable tale in which numerous characters of color take the lead.”

Publishers Weekly
Starred review!

It’s educational, thoughtful and most of all, FUN! All I kept thinking was, I just want to ride dactylback to . . . anywhere!”

Washington Post

“This high-energy title is perfect for middle graders, with its strong female protagonist, a fresh perspective on history, helpful notes and resources, and an honest portrayal of the complex topics of race and gender.”

School Library Journal
Starred review!

“This is one wild dinosaur ride packed with cinematic action. Exploration of racism and prejudice and questions of where primary loyalties lie add some heft to this first in a stomping good series.”

The Booklist Reader

“Perfect reading for young fans who would like some history mixed with a healthy dose of dinosaurs. The characters are engaging, the action impressive, and the sprinkling of historical events and characters more than enough to make the curious seek out their full history. My hat’s off to Older for creating an alternate history novel that leaves me hungry for more. Recommended.”

SciFi Pulse

“Daniel José Older is one of the most exciting literary voices I’ve…discovered in the past year”

The Roar Bots

“Dactyl Hill Squad” is a fascinating mash-up of Civil War history and dinosaurs.”

The New Orleans Advocate


Intelligent, rousing, and abundantly diverse, this is every bit as satisfying as the first installment.”

Publishers Weekly
Starred Review!

Showing great respect for his readers, Older doesn’t pull any punches. . . Blisteringly paced, thought-provoking adventure.”

Starred Review!

Older has middle-graders’ number with this dino-charged series. Stampedes are likely!”


Intelligent, rousing, and abundantly diverse, this is every bit as satisfying as the first installment.”

Publishers Weekly
Starred Review!

This series installment will draw readers in with its fast-paced action, likeable characters, and fantastical twists on Civil War history.”

School Library Journal

“[A] smart, wildly inventive series.”

Buffalo News

FREEDOM FIRE is… chock-full of action, sure to thrill young fans of adventure stories. Author Daniel José Older works some remarkable alchemy in his balance of storytelling, history, and dinosaurs.”



Older’s descriptions of Cuba, both past and present, are thoroughly transportive. This moving story of family and freedom is sure to captivate readers.”

Publishers Weekly,
Starred Review!

A genre-busting tale rife with ghosts, history, and music, at once lyrical and street-wise.”


THE BOOK OF LOST SAINTS is a gritty, compelling look at love and war and the ways past actions reverberate down through the generations.”

Shelf Awareness (reprinted from Cakes, Tea, and Dreams)

“Older’s spellbinding novel is a fever dream full of magic and loss, wickedness and grace, faith and love, spirit and power.”

—Marlon James,
New York Times-bestselling author of Black Leopard, Red Wolf

“A lyrical, beautiful, devastating, literally haunting journey of assimilation, resistance, and family. Older just keeps getting better and better.”

—N.K. Jemisin,
award-winning author of The Broken Earth Trilogy

“Older’s masterwork… should launch him into the company of literary greats… epic and intimate, conjuring laughter on one page, tears on the next. ”

—Tananarive Due,

American Book Award-winning author of The Living Blood and Ghostly Summer

“A thoughtful, intense, and resonant family saga… unforgettable and well worth your time. ”

—Alex Segura,
acclaimed author of Blackout and Dangerous Ends

“In Older’s stories, the dead are as much a part of life as the living… Older’s love for storytelling comes through on every page. ”

—Roxane Gay,
New York Times-bestselling author of Bad Feminist and Hunger

“This is the beauty and magic of Older’s writing— he leaves us openmouthed and speechless, asking, ‘What just happened to me?’ ”

—Jacqueline Woodson,
New York Times-bestselling author of Another Brooklyn

“A moving, startling, boldly drawn family saga that is equal parts mystery and ghost story, with details sharp enough to cut and characters who surprise at every turn.”

—Leigh Bardugo,
Worldwide bestselling author of Ninth House and the Grishaverse novels




Bone Street Rumba series

Shadowshaper series
1. Shadowshaper
2. Shadowhouse Fall
3. Shadowshaper Legacy
A. Ghost Girl in the Corner (novella)



Dactyl Hill Squad series

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***Three asterisks (***) placed after the record of a foreign territory sale indicate that those rights have expired and are available for purchase in that market for that title(s).***