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The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf

(The Tribe #1)

3.82  ·  Rating details ·  2,052 ratings  ·  402 reviews
“There will come a day when a thousand Illegals descend on your detention centres. Boomers will breach the walls. Skychangers will send lightning to strike you all down from above, and Rumblers will open the earth to swallow you up from below. . . . And when that day comes, Justin Connor, think of me.”

Ashala Wolf has been captured by Chief Administrator Neville Rose. A man
Paperback, AUS/NZ Edition, 395 pages
Published July 2012 by Walker Books Australia
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Kris Overtoom There is no sex. There is a romance between the two characters that is alluded to until the end. At the end, they kiss in a group setting. I don't rem…moreThere is no sex. There is a romance between the two characters that is alluded to until the end. At the end, they kiss in a group setting. I don't remember any direct swearing being quoted. (less)

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Me, while reading:
I think I like this book. Yup, I really like this book. I totally know what’s going on. Wait, what did I just read? Um…okay. I think I still know what’s going on though, nice try. Wait…what did she just say? Crap, I have no idea what’s going on, do I? WAIT…WUUUUUUT?! FUCK! I have never known what was going on! Damn it.

So touché, Ms Kwaymullina, that doesn’t happen to me very often.

Somehow, going into this, I didn’t realize that it was a YA book. Or that it was a dyst
May 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is a very impressive book written by an indigenous Australian author. Set three hundred years into the future, it is a dystopian story of our world after it has been wrecked by all the things our civilisation involves. Some small recovery has occurred and Ashala Wolf is the leader of a group of young misfits trying to survive under the new regime.
The book has a heavy Aboriginal Dreamtime influence to it which fits well with the idea of this new world. People are trying not to make the same
Naz (Read Diverse Books)
Dec 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
Full review is up on my blog! Read Diverse Books

Reasons to read this book.

Stories about kids with powers are always fun.
Are you a fan of X-Men, Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children, Misfits, etc.? Then you’ll like this book! Ashala has the Sleepwalking ability, which is the coolest, and allows her to do practically anything while she’s in her sleepwalking mode – fight with superhuman strength, travel through objects, or essentially make her dreams come true! Other people can manipulate m
Jan 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019-read
This is an engaging story, that feels current in its underlying social commentary without coming off preachy. I was fortunate to read this with my friend Lindsay, who was able to draw my attention to Australia's harsh policy towards illegal immigrants, of which I was previously unaware.

While the treatment of people with special abilities in this book stems from the author's experience as an Australian and as an aboriginal, examples of this type of detention and denial of citizenship rights can
Liz Janet
“There will come a day where a thousand illegals descend on your detention centre. Boomers will breach the walls. Skychangers will send lighting to strike you down from above and Rumblers will open the earth to swallow you up from bellow. And when that day comes, Justin Connor, think of me.”
With a quote like that on the flap how could I do nothing but love it? With a writer that was going to show diversity of aboriginals which I have read very little of, how could I not love it? With the abi
Jan 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
“You can't transform a society for the better with violence, Ashala. Only with ideas.”

At first, this YA novel felt like a typical story of persecution of people with ‘powers’ in a world that has been nearly destroyed. Ashala, head of the Tribe, a group of young Illegals, has been captured and is being interrogated by someone from the ruling government. Throughout her frank narration, we not only get an understanding of this world but also of this character, her instincts, and her drive to protec
The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf is the debut novel by Australian author Ambelin Kwaymullina. Set three hundred years in the future, the old world has been destroyed and a new world, much smaller than ours, has risen from the flood water. There are now people with abilities and some people, like Chief Administrator Neville Rose, believe them to be Illegals and want them locked in detention centres. Ashala Wolf is one of these Illegals and is leader of The Tribe that resides in the Firstwood. Ash ...more
Reading The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf feels a lot like this.

This book will fuck with your expectations. It’s original, unpredictable and utterly engrossing with its ingenious plot twist, imaginative dreamscapes, nightmares, memory flashbacks and sometimes even the complete loss of reality.

All your expectations and what you thought was true gets turned upside down.

”The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist. And like that, poof. He’s gone.” Verbal Kint,
✨    jamieson   ✨
I'm so so so glad I finally read this book, it's been something I've been meaning to do for ages and I really enjoyed it. Although dystopian has kind of gone out of fashion, I thought this one was very well done. It is an Indigenous Australian #OwnVoices piece, and the incorporation of Indigenous Dreamtime stories and Indigenous culture was beautiful. Ashala Wolf was an amazing protagonist, I really enjoyed her arc. I wasn't totally sold on the romance though, I like it at first but then I felt ...more
Jan 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-adult, fantasy
A superb young adult novel with an Australian aboriginal perspective that makes comment on the historical and current treatment of aboriginal people along with the current challenge of immigration detention centers.

The story picks up with Ashala Wolf in a detention center after an apparent betrayal and due to be tortured for information and used for the political gain of the people behind the detention center. Ashala is an Illegal (a person with powers) and the leader of the Tribe, a group of Il

“People with abilities are not a threat to the Balance”

“I’m afraid you are. You bring forces into being that are too powerful and unstable to be allowed to exist unchecked”

Smart, original and utterly compelling. 'The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf' is the first book in a young adult dystopian series by Ambelin Kwaymullina set in a futuristic version of Australia devastated by ecological collapse. A little bit Alexandra Bracken’s 'The Darkest Minds' meets Isobelle Carmody’s 'Obernewtyn', this is an
May 22, 2014 rated it it was ok
Another case of "it's not you, it's me."

This book should have been exactly my kind of book. Dystopia, weird mind stuff and "save the planet" kind of kids! YAY!

Instead, it was kind of....boring. Ashala is captured. From there, it's a lot of trying to figure out what on earth was going on. I think it lost me really early on, when the "dog" was leaping in the air in her dream eating "bones."

I don't mind suspense and confusion in a book, but I have to be invested in the character or the story....or
Aug 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Ambelin Kwaymullina is a breakout author, an Australian aboriginal writer and illustrator, who is part of the Palyku people of Western Australia. This is the story of the rebellious Ashala Wolf, who seeks to thwart the oppressive government in a dystopian society, and is told from her perspective as a captive being subjected to enhanced interrogation. Ashala herself is a idealistic indigenous protagonist, including themes such as living in harmony and tranquility, with respect for all living cre ...more
Shannon (Giraffe Days)
If, like me, you have a childhood steeped in fantasy and folklore; a love of the natural world and a soul-deep recognition of its greater importance in the scheme of things; a deep fascination with 'misfit abilities' (as in The Obernewtyn Chronicles and The X-Men); and a love for adventure stories involving youngsters outwitting malicious adults, you will, hopefully, love The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf as much as I did. This didn't just hit all my storytelling 'wants', to borrow the analogy; i ...more
Sarah Elizabeth
2.5 stars
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Candlewick Press and Netgalley.)
Ashala has a special ability, and has been on the since she was 12, not wanting to be assessed and detained because of her ability.
Now Ashala has been captured though, and she’s about to be interrogated by those who wish to assess and detain those with special abilities.

This book just wasn’t for me. I had trouble keeping up with what was going on, and I just did
Some good ideas, but a lack of characterization, energy and action.

Ashala is the teenage chief of the Tribe, a group of young people gifted (or damned) with special abilities. They are considered as a problem in the society and are detained in camps. Ashala is captured and interrogated, the bad guys wanting to learn things only she knows.

The book had an unusual setting I appreciated, with wild things communicating with the superpowered kids and a special bond existing between some of them. It ga
Aug 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Ashala Jane Ambrose is being taken to the machine that will break her. It will use her memories against her, ripping into her mind and putting the Tribe in danger.

There is nobody to help Ashala. The boy she trusted, Justin Connor, revealed himself as a traitor and is now her guard in Detention Centre 3. The infamous Chief Administrator, Neville Rose, has Ashala in his sights and will do whatever it takes to find the location of her Tribe in the Firstwood.

But within these walls are more Illegals
I was sucked in immediately when I began this book. Ashala Wolf's situation and perspective had me interested and invested in the Tribe. She and the other extraordinary members of her group have a variety of unusual abilities, for which they've been feared and hunted by the larger society they live in. This society has evolved from whatever survived some catastrophic incident, or series of incidents, many years earlier. People have decided to live in greater harmony with their surroundings, thou ...more
Oct 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
It's hard to believe that The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf is a début novel. It's rich prose, brilliantly imagined world, and nuanced characters are sure to impress a wide ranging audience.

There is an inherent Balance between all life, and the only way to preserve it is to live in harmony with ourselves, with each other, and with the earth."

I love the world-building in this novel! It's a dystopian world based on Australia with Dreamtime mythologies - like the Serpent - cleverly weaved into it. A
Aug 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
I really really enjoyed this book. I thought I would struggle, there's so many different characters & timelines since the story jumps around between past events. But actually it was easy & engaging. I was invested from the first chapter & I'm definitely going to read the sequels. ...more
Julia Lawrinson
Jan 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A cracking story, brilliant characters (especially Ashala herself), and an interrogation of (see what I did there?!) moral responsibility that is unusual in its complexity.
May 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
This ended on such a perfect note that I'm wondering how the series will continue...
Jul 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
The Short Story? - This one took me by utter surprise. I still can't believe how much I enjoyed it! The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf is definitely one of my favourite YA dystopians that I've read this year! Bringing YA dystopian together with elements of the Dreaming ( aboriginal legends), The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf is a show of fresh talent with an authentic narrative voice and a intriguing plot! Kwaymullina's debut is absolutely breath-taking!

The Long Story? - To be honest I had no i
Carole (Carole's Random Life in Books)
This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Candlewick Press and Net Galley for the purpose of providing an honest review.

4 Stars!

This was one of those books that the more I read, the more I liked it. I find myself gravitating towards YA books right now. I found this to be a great addition to that genre. I was first intrigued by the cover of this book which shows a fierce face of young girl. It is a wonderful cover that I would no
May 13, 2014 rated it liked it
I finished this on the fence about whether it was a 2 or 3 for me and whether it was a potential 3/4 for YAs. Ultimately, I am splitting the difference.

I like the Aboriginal flavor of the dystopian post apocalyptic world created here. And there's also lots to like about the environmental message and outlook espoused by the positive characters in the novel. However, it's the baddies who run the government who use the term "balance" to justify their prejudice against those with abilities, those ca
Sinead Anja (Huntress of Diverse Books)
Check out my book blog for more book reviews and other bookish posts!

I decided to read The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf, when @RuruReads announced that they were holding a readalong. I had been hearing about the book for a long time, but I’d never thought of actually purchasing it.

It’s ownvoices Indigeneous Australian representation.


I thought I’d read a little every day and kind of join in with the readalong. I ended up finishing it in one day, because I could just not put it down! It was so g
Aug 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
This was so much fun. Ashala Wolf explored themes I love - humanity's relationship to nature, describing fellow humans as 'others' so we can lock them up and mistreat them - without being in the least heavy-handed. The characters were rich and interesting, their 'superpowers' unusual and well-thought-out. And I was particularly impressed by the structure, which allowed the story to completely turn on its axis about one-third of the way in. It was clever, and it worked logistically and emotionall ...more
Jan 07, 2014 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Angela by: Navessa
Shelves: dystopian, kindle, ya
8 January 2016: $3.99 on Kindle ...more
This was not my cup of tea.
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Ambelin Kwaymullina loves reading sci-fi/fantasy books, and has wanted to write a novel since she was six years old. She comes from the Palyku people of the Pilbara region of Western Australia. When not writing or reading she teaches law, illustrates picture books, and hangs out with her dogs.

Other books in the series

The Tribe (3 books)
  • The Disappearance of Ember Crow (The Tribe #2)
  • The Foretelling of Georgie Spider (The Tribe, #3)

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