Spotlight Post: Last Gate of the Emperor


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Super excited to be able to spotlight this upcoming middle grade science fiction book, inspired by Ethiopian lore, LAST GATE OF THE EMPEROR! Be sure to follow along with the schedule, linked here, to check out all of the amazing reviews and gorgeous posts! 



Last Gate of the Emperor by Kwame Mbalia & Prince Joel Makonnen
Release Date: May 4, 2021
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Genre: MG Science Fiction
Pages: 304
ISBN: 9781338665857

An Afrofuturist adventure about a mythical Ethiopian empire. Sci-fi and fantasy combine in this journey to the stars.

Yared Heywat lives an isolated life in Addis Prime — a hardscrabble city with rundown tech, lots of rules, and not much to do. His worrywart Uncle Moti and bionic lioness Besa are his only family… and his only friends.

Often in trouble for his thrill-seeking antics and smart mouth, those same qualities make Yared a star player of the underground augmented reality game, The Hunt for Kaleb’s Obelisk. But when a change in the game rules prompts Yared to log in with his real name, it triggers an attack that rocks the city. In the chaos, Uncle Moti disappears.

Suddenly, all the stories Yared’s uncle told him as a young boy are coming to life, of kingdoms in the sky and city-razing monsters. And somehow Yared is at the center of them.

Together with Besa and the Ibis — a game rival turned reluctant ally — Yared must search for his uncle… and answers to his place in a forgotten, galaxy-spanning war.

Purchase Links

Barnes & Noble
Book Depository

Ethiopian lore behind LAST GATE OF THE EMPEROR-page-001


Kwame Mbalia



 KWAME MBALIA is a husband, father, writer, a New York Times bestselling author, and a   former pharmaceutical metrologist in that order. He is the author of Tristan Strong Punches a   Hole in the Sky, a Coretta Scott King Honor book. He lives with his family in North Carolina.   Visit him online at




Prince Joel Makonnen


 PRINCE JOEL MAKONNEN is the great-grandson of His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile   Selassie I, the last emperor of Ethiopia. He is an attorney and the co-founder of Old   World/New World, a media and entertainment company focused on telling powerful African   stories that   inspire global audiences through film, TV and books. He lives with his wife,   Ariana, in Los Angeles.


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