Alexandra Alter at the NYT:
Roanhorse said she started out writing “Tolkien knockoffs about white farm boys going on journeys” because she figured that’s what epic fantasy was supposed to be. After deciding to feature a Native woman as the hero, in 2018 she released “Trail of Lightning,” the first novel in a four book fantasy series. Set on a reservation after a flood destroys most of North America and reawakens traditional gods and monsters, the series centers on a Navajo woman named Maggie, who has superhuman monster-slaying powers, and features sacred figures from Navajo mythology like Coyote and Neizghání, one of the Hero Twins.
“The stories that I’m writing, these are the traditional American gods,” Roanhorse said. Some see the rise of Indigenous sci-fi as a natural extension of Native American narrative traditions, which often have sci-fi elements, like tales about visitors from outer space and a creation myth about humanity descending from the sky.