The Land of Stories meets Dominican culture and mythology come to life in Julian Randall's Pilar Ramirez and the Curse of San Zenon, the action-packed fantasy duology finale—for fans of the Tristan Strong series and Amari and the Night Brothers.
After being magically transported to the mythical island of Zafa and rescuing her long captive cousin Natasha, Pilar is back in Chicago . . . and hiding the shocking truths about Zafa and Natasha being alive. So, when she and her family are invited on a trip to Santo Domingo, Pilar welcomes the distraction and the chance to see the Dominican Republic for the first time.
But when Ciguapa and close friend Carmen magically appears in the DR searching for help, Pilar is soon on the hunt for the escaped demon El Baca and his mysterious new ally. Now, with a cursed storm gathering over the island to resurrect an ancient enemy, Pilar will have to harness her newfound bruja powers if she has any hope of saving her own world, Zafa, and most importantly her family before the clock runs out and ushers in a new era of evil.
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. Follow him on Twitter!
"Dominican lore brings a fresh perspective to a thrilling tale." —Kirkus
"Action-packed details on every page fully bring the conclusion of this duology to life." —School Library Journal
Praise for Pilar Ramirez and the Escape from Zafa
"A breathtaking journey through a world teeming with fantasy and history—readers better hold on tight as Pilar swings into her next adventure." —Kwame Mbalia, New York Times–bestselling author of the Tristan Strong series
“Randall takes history and myth and weaves a tight fantasy that is as funny as it is poignant. This novel is sure to delight and awe.” —Elizabeth Acevedo, National Book Award Winner
* "Magic awaits around every corner in Zafa. Nonstop action and plenty of heart create a story worth escaping into." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review
* "Fusing a vibrant, self-assured narrative voice; subtly wrought intergenerational concerns; and rich, Dominican-inspired worldbuilding, Randall creates an undeniable page-turner." —Publishers Weekly, starred review
"I love this book so much. Julian Randall is a brilliant, refreshing new voice in young people's literature and he has imbued this story with a whole mountain of love, humor, honesty, and adventure. ¡Pa'lante!" —Daniel José Older, New York Times–bestselling author
"Incredible voice that jumps right off the page. Pilar is the hilarious hero we need right now. My Dominican heart BURST reading this story, but in the best way." —Claribel A. Ortega, New York Times–bestselling author of Ghost Squad