A Jigsaw of Fire and Stars

Author(s): Yaba Badoe

Young Adult

A powerful, haunting, contemporary debut that steps seamlessly from the horrors of people-trafficking to the magic of African folklore, by an award-winning Ghanaian-British filmmaker.

Sante was a baby when she was washed ashore in a sea-chest laden with treasure. It seems she is the sole survivor of the tragic sinking of a ship carrying migrants and refugees. Her people.

Fourteen years on she's a member of Mama Rose's unique and dazzling circus. But, from their watery grave, the unquiet dead are calling Sante to avenge them:

A bamboo flute. A golden bangle. A ripening mango which must not fall . . .

. . . are these the missing pieces of the jigsaw which will tell Sante's story?

Longlisted for Branford Boase Award 2018.


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'A beautifully written, unusual story ... A gripping tale and an introduction to a rich and rewarding writing style' The School Librarian. 'A celebration of all forms of diversity, a joyful call to inclusion, released by House of Zeus into the globally charged, high-pitched debate about closed and open borders. This children's book is Yaba Badoe's love-song, an antidote to the hateful rhetoric and divisive politics miring that debate' Borders Literature. 'A wildly original novel and something really different in YA ... An ambitious, diverse and challenging novel, the like of which I'm really pleased to see in YA. It's vastly different to anything else being marketed at teens and also features plenty to engage an adult reader' Wilde on My Side. 'A memorable, haunting young adult tale' The Bookbag. 'A rich and vibrant YA novel ... definitely one to watch' Askews. 'Badoe's novel deftly entwines some of the tropes of the fairy-tale tradition with the tragic realities of Europe's contemporary migrant situation ... One of the most interesting and unusual debuts I've read for a while. Badoe throws you straight into the action and yet manages to also infuse the story with magical qualities' Childtastic Books. 'It's hard being a writer. In such a competitive industry, you really need a fantastic writing style to stand out from the crowd. Yaba Badoe has that in spades. The richness of her writing, and the breadth of colourful imagery she uses, is very evocative and creates a world in which issues like the migrant crisis exist side by side with magic to create something unique. In short, it's great' Roaring Bookworm. 'It's breath-taking stuff ... Things don't get much more original than this' Books for Keeps. 'A rich powerful novel, fusing the horror of people-trafficking with the magic of African folklore' The Bookseller. 'A blend of magical realism and brutality, this is a powerful and original novel' Sally Morris, Daily Mail.

Yaba Badoe is an award-winning Ghanaian-British documentary filmmaker and writer. In 2014 Yaba was nominated for the Distinguished Woman of African Cinema award.

General Fields

  • : 9781786695499
  • : Head of Zeus
  • : Zephyr
  • : February 2018
  • : 198mm X 129mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : April 2018
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 320
  • : Paperback
  • : Yaba Badoe