Written by Marcus Sedgwick
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The Lovereading4Kids comment
In a Nutshell: Gangs dice with death under the gaze of Mexican folk saint. A thought-fuelling thriller set in a gang-run neighbourhood near the border of Mexico and El Norte (America). The writing is poetically punchy. Exquisitely formed sentences are fired-off in smarting succession, and the juxtaposition of contemporary totems like Burger King buildings with the likes of folk saint shrines is smartly done. This is a richly layered novel in which important socio-political issues (gangs, poverty, corruption, migration, social divisions and dissonance) are made potently real through Arturo and Faustino’s predicaments. And alongside the enlightening Mexico-specific context, there’s much that is universal: friendship, loyalty, and searching for a sense of purpose. As paternal figure Siggy tells Arturo, “You just have to find out what it is you’re looking for.” Pacey and passionate, this truly exceptional book tells a tale that truly needs to be heard. ~ Joanne Owen
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Siobhan Dowd's powerful story of the fight against racism and prejudice, The Pavee and the Buffer Girl, has been reissued as a splendid graphic novel with stunning illustrations by Emma Shoard. We are giving away an ORIGINAL print from the book (shown here) and a copy SIGNED by Emma.
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Saint Death by Marcus Sedgwick
A potent, powerful and timely thriller about migrants, drug lords and gang warfare set on the US/Mexican border by Printz Medal winning and Carnegie Medal, Costa Book Award and Guardian Children's Fiction Prize shortlisted novelist, Marcus Sedgwick.
Anapra is one of the poorest neighbourhoods in the Mexican city of Juarez - twenty metres outside town lies a fence, and beyond it, America - the dangerous goal of many a migrant. Faustino is one such trying to escape from the gang he's been working for. He's dipped into a pile of dollars he was supposed to be hiding and now he's on the run. He and his friend, Arturo, have only 36 hours to replace the missing money, or they're as good as dead. Watching over them is Saint Death. Saint Death (or Santissima Muerte) - she of pure bone and charcoal-black eye, she of absolute loyalty and neutral morality, holy patron to rich and poor, to prostitute and narco-lord, criminal and police-chief. A folk saint, a rebel angel, a sinister guardian.
I really enjoyed Marcus Sedgwick's strange and intriguing tale, told in rhythmical and compelling prose. David Almond
I read it in one glorious gulp [...] this isn't a larky read, although the heavy subject matter could not slow down the pace if it tried. [...] Sedgwick writes like a dream -- Alex O'Connell The Times
Bleak, choppy, switching freely between perspectives and languages, Sedgwick's book pulls no punches, and will leave the reader reeling THE GUARDIAN
A very powerful book [...] I believe it will easily raise awareness and inspire empathy because Arturo's story is so tragic. -- Tilly Lavenas Amnesty International's Country Coordinator for Mexico
Most similar in tone to Revolver, this is an incredibly powerful thriller, tautly written and timely, exploring a world of drug lords and gang warfare, migration and capitalism, and what it means to live in poverty. -- Fiona Noble The Bookseller
It's beautifully-written with a real sense of atmosphere, menace and tension The Bookbag
Saint Death is perhaps the first great anti-capitalist YA novel of the 21st Century. Teen Librarian
Exploring themes of migration, capitalism and social mobility this taut thriller, laced with Mexican folklore, will have you holding your breath until the shocking climax. South Wales Evening Post
A tightly plotted, dark and thrilling tale of crime, poverty and desperation, Saint Death pulls no punches in painting a horribly accurate picture of life for the poorest young people in Mexico, where savage criminality may be the only choice Book Trust
I think this is probably the most important book to be released this decade. -- Mandy Southgate Addicted to Media
...there's more to this book than just a gripping story-line it's an eye-opener regarding the conditions in which thousands of people live alongside the border. Our Book Reviews
Marcus Sedgwick's brilliant YA thriller Saint Death, describes a place in Mexico where rights violations make it impossible to live well with integrity Books for Keeps
I can't fully explain how important it is, how horrifically hopeful and sad it is. Just writing this review and remembering the book has me on the verge of tears. I can only hope you read it. -- Emily May The Book Geek
This is not a comfortable read, and not for the faint-hearted - Sedgwick points a finger at our indifference, and no compromise has been made to the brutal realism - but it is an important read. The School Librarian
In places Saint Death becomes difficult to read [...] but it's an important book and it made me consider issues that, up until this point, were easy for me to turn my back on. [...] In Saint Death, we see Sedgwick at his most raw, his most honest and, unforgettably, his most brutal. Writing from the Tub
This is also a really well-written and well-researched novel that draws you in and never lets you go. Please read it. Star Crossed Book Blog
Sedgwick did the right thing in showing the dark reality faced by Mexicans through their eyes, it made a change from what the media usually presents them as... Incendium Libri
Another gem from a prize-winning author, whose masterful delivery of prose will leave you breathless ... A quick-paced and addictive read for young adult readers and up. I loved this Inis
About the Author
Interest Age: From 12
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Orion Children's Books an imprint of Hachette Children's Group
6th April 2017
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