Twelve-year-old Marinka dreams of a normal life, where her house stays in one place long enough for her to make friends. But her house has chicken legs and moves on without warning. The only people Marinka meets are dead, and they disappear when her grandmother, Baba Yaga, guides them through The Gate. Marinka wants to change her destiny, but her house has other ideas…
“Enticing, a little bit dangerous, and thrumming with possibilities.” Kiran Millwood Hargrave, author of The Girl of Ink and Stars
Shortlisted for the 2019 CILIP Carnegie Medal, shortlisted for Children’s Fiction Book Of The Year in The British Book Awards, shortlisted for the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize 2019, shortlisted for the Branford Boase Award, and shortlisted in the 2019 Blue Peter Book Awards. Waterstones Children’s Book of the Month, a Kirkus Best Book of 2018 and an American Booksellers Association Indies Introduce Selection. Book of the Month in The Bookseller, The Guardian and Just Imagine Story Centre. Book of the Week in The Sunday Times, The Week Junior and The Phoenix Comic. Featured in BookTrust’s Great Books Guide 2018 and part of The Reading Agency’s Summer Reading Challenge 2018.
“Heartbreaking, uplifting, and absolutely beautiful.” Kirkus Reviews, starred review“A thoughtfully crafted, macabre masterpiece.” School Library Journal, starred review“Utterly magical and highly original.” The Bookseller, Children’s Book of the Month“This original debut takes a poignant, philosophical look at predestination and free choice.” The Guardian“This is a captivating and original retelling of a traditional story straight out of folklore. Beautiful escapism.” Sunday Express“Makes my spine tingle. If you love a good tale with lots of mystery, check this one out!” The Phoenix“This vividly imagined blend of fairy tale and coming-of-age novel reflects perceptively on death and loss, while at the same time celebrating the joys of life and the warmth of human attachments.” The Sunday Times Book of the Week“The story takes you on an adventure full of twists and turns and makes you think. Loved it!” American Booksellers Association“Written with great clarity and lucidity.” Inis Magazine“Enticing, a little bit dangerous, and thrumming with possibilities.” Kiran Millwood Hargrave, Waterstones Children’s Book Prize-winning author of The Girl of Ink and Stars“Filled with warmth and spun from gossamer threads of magic. I loved it!” Peter Bunzl, author of Cogheart“A spellbinding tale, beautifully told and full of heart. Pure magic.” Claire Fayers, author of The Accidental Pirates“Brimming with real magic and wonder and beauty and heart, and I loved it SO MUCH. Marinka’s aching loneliness broke my heart in the beginning, but reading to the perfect ending filled me up with joy.” Stephanie Burgis, author of The Dragon with the Chocolate Heart“5 stars. Memorable characters abound in this wonderful, vivid story which puts the Slavic folk lore figure of Baba Yaga into modern child’s life. This is a book they’ll read again and again and again. Highly, highly recommended. This one should win all the awards and go down as a classic.” The Bookbag