The Coal Elf by Maria DeVivo
Ember Skye is a fed up teenage Coal Elf with a big ashy chip on her shoulder. Having been torn away from a carefree life and forced into a world of dirt and darkness has started to get the best of her. And being the only girl-elf working as a coal miner at the North Pole doesn't help much either!
Then there's Sturd: a power-hungry, twisted elf with a checkered past and a serious grudge against Ember. Slowly but surely, his maniacal tendencies are revealed, leaving Ember with the sacred "Naughty List" literally in her lap.
When a mysterious illness threatens to decimate elves both Above and Underground, Ember is thrust into a journey that will see her confront the literal and figurative demons of her past and lead her to the head of the North Pole himself.
Yes! Santa is real. But this isn't your childhood Christmas tale
Ember is a rarity. A girl Coal Elf. It's unusual that the girls are assigned the job of mining coal.
She misses her parents and sister who are all workers above, designing toys. All Elves live by "the list" and in hopes to be noticed by The Boss. Ember's job is hard from day one. Although she is able to make friends, she also has a sort of bully that loves to tease and annoy her. Since it is the Boss that chooses the jobs, there is no switching. Your stuck. Nobody questions the Boss.
Mining is a very hard and dangerous job. This is not a happy or joyful Christmas story, it's like being the new girl at school kind of feeling to it. It's a bit of a culture shock for her. From living in a beautiful city, in a Manor to having to move into an underground apartment and only getting to visit home. But when she finally does visit home, she finds she's been banished. Like her life isn't bad enough already.
But this story is not only working in tunnels and dirty coal. Ember will eventually end up on an adventure, and with stubborn determination, she will find the help she needs. Things are happening down in the tunnels and she is going to fight for change.
With a deeply determined and hard working main character. This story was a darker but very entertaining read.A focus on the Naughty List and how much coal do bad kids get? And who knew that Elves could be just as Naughty! Great if you are looking for something a little different to read this Holiday Season.