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Pascale Petit

My Hummingbird Father

My Hummingbird Father


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The debut novel from the Ondaatje Prize and Laurel Prize-winning author

When artist Dominique receives a letter from her dying father, a reckoning with repressed memories and a pull for romantic and familial love sends shock waves through her life, as she journeys to Paris to face the places and events of her early years.

Balanced with visits to the Venezuelan Amazon, where Dominique explores a spiritual and loving longing (meeting a young guide, Juan), a raw and tender unfolding of this love story is a parallel to the uncovering of the shocking truth of Dominique’s birth, and her parents’ relationship.

Pascale Petit’s My Hummingbird Father is a beautifully lyrical debut novel in dialogue with Pascale’s Ondaatje and Laurel Prize-winning poetry collection, Mama Amazonica.

Praise for this Book

My Hummingbird Father shatters and heals, distils redemption out of a history of pain and abuse, and is one of the most affecting books you will read this year. Petit’s jewelled sentences, rich in imagery and inspiration from the natural world, weave tiny, beautiful lessons from sparrows, captive jaguars and broken humans together into a stunning, unforgettable tapestry.’ —Nilanjana Roy

‘I am in love with this book! Haunting, grotesque, lush and strangely tender. A stunning debut novel, afraid of nothing and deeply poetic.’ —Warsan Shire

Praise for Previous Work

‘Petit is a passionate laureate of the natural world, but alive to the cruelty of human depredation.’ —Aingeal Clare, The Guardian

‘Beautifully sad, the imagery inexhaustible, the sorrow and torment both tempered and sharpened by the relish for language and the ingenuity of the imagination.’ —Simon Armitage

Mama Amazonica stitches parallels between the destruction of the Amazon rainforest and a mother and daughter’s experience of mental illness. We felt that in creating this duality she might have achieved what should have been impossible.’ —Moniza Alvi, Judge, The Laurel Prize

‘She has a powerful, imagistic authority over the landscape.’ —Daljit Nagra, Front Row, BBC Radio 4

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