The Last Cuentista
Thirteen-year-old Petra and her family were selected to travel to a new planet and start a new life because a comet was going to strike Earth. But when she awakes from the hundred-year journey, she learns that the Collective has taken over the spaceship, erasing everyone’s memories of Earth and, with them, their unique histories and identities. But not Petra’s. She remembers. She embarks on a dangerous journey to save herself and others, risking being reprogrammed while protecting what makes them human. This award-winning story is stylistically rich with themes of family, identity, and resistance. Suitable for a middle-grade audience, it explores the dangers of social and cultural homogeneity in a post-apocalyptic story that looks at the importance of stories, history, and culture in founding a new human colony. The book is appropriate for a whole-class read-aloud or novel study. Teachers may prompt students to explore political ideologies, the importance of personal identity and culture, and discuss significant ethical decisions—possibly also using the text to segue into a unit on storytelling.