Manilla Press, Bonnier Books UK’s literary imprint, is publishing a new novel from Christy Lefteri, author of The Beekeeper of Aleppo.
Publishing next July 2021 in hardback, trade paperback, e-book and audio, the new book Songbirds is described as "a triumphant exploration of loss, the strength of the human spirit, and the unbreakable bonds of courage, and love".
The synopsis reads: "Set on the island of Cyprus, Yannis is a poacher who dreams of a new way of life but for now traps and kills tiny protected songbirds to be sold on the black market. Yannis is in love with Nisha who works as a nanny, while also mothering her own child back in Sri Lanka by the screen of a phone. With infinite tenderness and skill, Christy Lefteri has crafted a powerful story about the unseen who walk among us, cleaning our homes and caring for our children, and explores what it is to migrate in search of freedom, only to find yourself trapped."
Lefteri said: "Songbirds is about migration and crossing borders, searching for a better life and becoming trapped. It was influenced by recent events in Cyprus where five foreign domestic workers and two children went missing. When the women were reported missing, the authorities did not investigate because they were foreign. I felt so saddened by the inhumanity and injustice of this. I felt compelled to shine a light on this situation and the deeply rooted institutionalised racism that prevented the police from launching a search party.
"I’m over the moon that Bonnier will be publishing Songbirds. From the publication of The Beekeeper of Aleppo, I just knew that I had found the best home as a writer. I’ve absolutely loved working with Kate Parkin, Margaret Stead and all the wonderful team at Bonnier. They have been supportive and brilliant to work with, I’m eternally grateful for everything they have done and look forward to the publication of Songbirds."
Publisher Margaret Stead said: "The Beekeeper of Aleppo, which we acquired from agent Marianne Gunn O’Connor, has been a phenomenal success, an international bestseller which has sold nearly half a million copies in our territories. Now, with Songbirds, Christy turns her clear-eyed compassion on a story set in Cyprus, but all too real for us all. Working with Christy on this brilliant, heart-breaking new novel is a dream, and we are all very excited and proud to be publishing it next July."
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