Ketchup Clouds

Ketchup Clouds

3.76 (13,903 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 
3.76 (13,903 ratings by Goodreads)
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Winner of the Waterstone's Children's Book Prize 2013, KETCHUP CLOUDS tells the story of one teenage girl with a very big secret.

Fifteen-year-old Zoe has a secret - a dark and terrible secret that she can't confess to anyone she knows. But then one day she hears of a criminal, Stuart Harris, locked up on death row in Texas. Like Zoe, Stuart is no stranger to secrets. Or lies. Or murder.

Full of both heartache and humour, Zoe tells her story in the only way she can - in letters to the man in prison in America. Armed with a pen, Zoe takes a deep breath, eats a jam sandwich, and begins her tale of love and betrayal.
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Product details

  • 12+
  • Paperback | 320 pages
  • 126 x 196 x 30mm | 280g
  • Orion Children's Books
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • UK ed.
  • 9781780620312
  • 38,983

Review Text

It's a moving and ultimately highly compassionate tale. To be human is to err, after all. Martin Chilton, THE TELEGRAPH
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Review quote

It's a moving and ultimately highly compassionate tale. To be human is to err, after all. * Martin Chilton, THE TELEGRAPH * I would definitely recommend this book for anyone looking for an invigorating, coming-of-age book. The young adult category can often come off as whiney and "woe is me" but this book proves that that is not always the case, even when the main character does have a lot to whine about. There are good authors of every genre if you just know where to look and Annabel Pitcher is one of them. * THE GUARDIAN * Annabel Pitcher presents a harrowing tale of a girl learning to deal with love, family, remorse and grief. Through a mixture of her hilarious, sweet and honest confessions, Zoe comes to life on the page. * TEENREADS * Blending powerful emotion and darkness with ironic humour, it is a gripping and moving story about secrets, lies and growing up. Sometimes uncomfortable, sometimes wistful, often funny and always compassionate, this is a beautifully-crafted and unexpected coming-of-age story that will win readers' hearts. * BOOKTRUST * This is a clever, multi-layered book. It's heartstoppingly sweet, very sad, and very, very real. Everyone should take notes on how to write a love story from this gorgeous novel because I believed every word. And, of course, I cried.
Highly recommended. * THE BOOKBAG *
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About Annabel Pitcher

Annabel graduated from Oxford University with a degree in English Literature and an ambition to be a children's author. She had a variety of jobs before deciding to travel the world and focus on writing. Annabel now lives in Yorkshire with her husband and two young sons.

Her first book, MY SISTER LIVES ON THE MANTELPIECE, won the Branford Boase and a Betty Trask Award in 2012 and KETCHUP CLOUDS won the 2014 Waterstones Children's Prize. Annabel's work has been shortlisted for numerous prestigious awards including the Dylan Thomas Prize, the Galaxy British Book Award and the Red House Children's Book Award and longlisted for the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize and the 2012 CILIP Carnegie Medal.

Visit Annabel's website at and follow her on Twitter @APitcherAuthor.
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Rating details

13,903 ratings
3.76 out of 5 stars
5 25% (3,535)
4 38% (5,236)
3 27% (3,693)
2 8% (1,129)
1 2% (310)

Our customer reviews

I really enjoyed this book! Zoe is such a fascinating character. Right off the bat, she tells you that she’s a murderer, so naturally you shouldn’t like her. But she writes the letters in such a brutally honest way that I couldn’t help but loving her. Zoe doesn’t explain the details of the murder until the end, which was perfect, since the story really isn’t about that night. It’s about the relationships built and shattered during the months leading up to it. This is a great YA contemporary where the family dynamics are just as important as the teenage relationships. I completely loved and connected with Zoe’s family. They were just so real and engaging. The narrative structure was interesting too. The entire story is written in a compilation of letters. She uses Stuart as a soundboard to come to terms with everything that’s happening now and everything she can’t change. This story might not be the happiest, but it’s so wonderfully done. It takes the YA Contemporary genre and spins it in a thought provoking gut-wrenching sort of more
by Ryann Dannelly
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