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Jul 7, 2021

"I’ve never read anything quite like Songbirds - a beautifully crafted novel that sits at the intersection of race and class" Jodi Picoult

Christy Lefteri’s Songbirds

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She walks unseen through our world.
Cares for our children, cleans our homes.
She has a story to tell.
Will you listen?

Songbirds tells the story of Nisha who has crossed oceans to give her child a future. By day she cares for Petra's daughter; at night she mothers her own little girl by the light of a phone.

Nisha's lover, Yiannis, is a poacher, hunting the tiny songbirds on their way to Africa each winter. His dreams of a new life, and of marrying Nisha, are shattered when she vanishes.

No one cares about the disappearance of a domestic worker, except Petra and Yiannis. As they set out to search for her, they realise how little they know about Nisha. What they uncover will change them all.

Set in her native Cyprus, Christy Lefteri has crafted a powerful, redemptive story of loss, of the triumph of the human spirit, and of the enduring love of a mother for her child.

Published by Manilla Press (Bonnier Books) in the UK, Songbirds has sold into 20 territories to date and will be published by Ballantine Randomhouse in the US on July 31st

Christy’s previous novel The Beekeeper of Aleppo sold over one million ‎copies worldwide and rights sold into 40 territories.

Praise for Songbirds:

“I've never read anything quite like Songbirds - a beautifully crafted novel that sits at the intersection of race and class”

Jodi Picoult, bestselling author of Small Great Things

“Will break your heart and open your eyes”

Heather Morris, author of The Tattooist of Auschwitz

I loved this tender, moving story . . . about the powerful chord that binds mothers to daughters, about those we fail to see and protect. The humanity in this book is compelling, tinged with sadness, delicately delivered with urgency. I finished this book and could not stop thinking about Nisha. It is stunning and beautiful. . . . A magnificent achievement.”

Abi Daré, author of The Girl with the Louding Voice

“Like the vulnerable songbirds trapped in mist nets, Christy Lefteri’s characters—women who leave foreign lands to work abroad and send money back home—broke my heart and kept me turning the pages of her gorgeous novel well into the night.”

Alka Joshi, author of The Henna Artist and The Secret Keeper of Jaipur

“This thought-provoking novel of love, loss, and redemption is thoroughly sublime.”

Caroline Montague, author of An Italian Affair

“Lefteri is an astonishing weaver of stories that speak to the world with humor and compassion. She is imaginatively daring as she is socially responsible in a style that sustains a compelling narrative from start to end and that kept me on the edge.”

Daljit Nagra, author of British Museum

“..deftly explores themes of freedom, motherhood, community and identity… while the migrant community are sensitively given a voice and the injustices they face uncovered. A moving and important read”

The Independent

“Christy Lefteri’s timely second novel packs the same Trojan horse punch as her bestselling The Beekeeper of Aleppo”

Noon Bookclub

“A poignant story of what it means to migrate in search of freedom”


“(a) moving new novel exploring the intersection of class and race. And the horrific realities of the migrant experience”

The Glossary London

“Remarkable and memorable”


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