Square Fish Pilar Ramirez and the Escape from Zafa
Square Fish Pilar Ramirez and the Escape from Zafa

Pilar Ramirez and the Escape from Zafa

By Julian Randall


Publication Date: January 31, 2023

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Ages 8 to 12

A middle-grade fantasy about a girl who sets off on a journey to find her missing cousin and gets transported to an island world filled with Dominican myths and legends.

Everything in Pilar's world is changing. Her Chicago neighborhood is gentrifying and her chores have doubled since her sister left for college. The only constant is her family's code of silence around her cousin Natasha—who disappeared in the Dominican Republic fifty years ago during the Trujillo dictatorship.

When Pilar hears that a professor studies such disappearances, she hops on the next train downtown. After snooping around the professor's empty office, she finds a folder with her cousin’s name on it . . . and literally falls into it. Pilar lands on Zafa, an island alive with mythical warriors, demons, and a magical prison where Natasha is held captive. Pilar will have to go toe-to-toe with the Dominican boogeyman if she has any hope of freeing Natasha and returning home.

About the Author

Julian Randall is a Living Queer Black poet from Chicago. His poetry and essays are published in The New York Times Magazine, Poetry, The Atlantic, and Vibe. He is the recipient of a Pushcart Prize. Julian holds an MFA in poetry from Ole Miss. His first book, Refuse, won the Cave Canem Poetry Prize and was a finalist for an NAACP Image Award. He was also a contributor to the #1 New York Times bestseller Black Boy Joy. Julian has previously worked as a youth mentor, teaching writing workshops to children on house arrest. Pilar Ramirez and the Escape from Zafa is his debut children's novel. juliandavidrandall.com Twitter: @julianthepoet

Format: Trade Paperback

Length: 320 pages

Publisher: Square Fish

Publication Date: January 31, 2023

ISBN: 9781250866066

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