Burnt Eucalyptus Wood: On Origins, Language and Identity


Ennatu Domingo
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SKU: 9781911648581 Category:

20 April 2023
ISBN 978-1911648581
Cover design © Luke Bird
Front cover painting by Bekelech Tamayo
A-Format 178mm x 111mm
200 pages

Who are you, when you come from two places?

Ennatu Domingo was adopted from Ethiopia at the age of seven and transplanted to Barcelona where she learned to flourish. But she never forgot her nomadic childhood in the mountains and meadows of Gondar, near the northern border with Eritrea.

Having witnessed the hardships of Ethiopian rural women at an early age, she was inspired to study the patriarchal structures that underpinned her individual experiences, both in the West and in contemporary Ethiopia. She has lived in Kenya, Belgium and the UK, and has travelled across the five continents, but keeps returning to the country of her childhood, to re-construct a lost identity guided by the echo of her first language Amharic and the weight of a rich cultural heritage.

Torn between forgetting and remembering, Ennatu explores the dilemma of international adoptees and migrant children and their quest for belonging in a book destined to be a classic of its genre.


‘Burnt Eucalyptus Wood defies easy categorization. It is at once a love story and a battle cry, an elegy and an anthem. It is compulsive reading, bursting with tenderness while remaining uncompromising in its assessments and realizations. Take note: this astonishing book announces the arrival of a rare voice, wise beyond her years. Perhaps beyond all of ours.’
Maaza Mengiste, author of The Shadow King, shortlisted for the 2020 Booker Prize

‘The biography of Ennatu Domingo is impressive, and hearing her speak is no less impressive. In this small body there are more experiences than can be imagined for a 25-year-old from Barcelona.’
—Ara Magazine

‘In the midst of so much pessimism, especially among young people, this one book is like a crack of light in the dark.’
—Starred review in Time Out (Barcelona)

‘The author mixes the sentimental, intimate and evocative part, which she knows first-hand, with statistics and reports on the African social and economic reality.’
—La Vanguardia

About the author

Ennatu Domingo was born in Ethiopia. She holds a BA in Political Science and an MA in International Conflict and Security. She was awarded a Schuman traineeship to work at the European Parliament’s Africa, Caribbean and the Pacific (ACP) Unit and currently works for the European Centre for Development Policy Management in The Netherlands.

Ennatu’s non-fiction debut, Burnt Eucalyptus Wood was published in March 2022 by Editorial Navona in Catalan and Spanish. The book was an instant success across print and broadcast media.

Coming soon…

Cafè d’idees, 21 April 2022: Ennatu Domingo in conversation with Gemma Nierga

Ara Magazine, 13 April 2022: From rural Ethiopia to the heart of the EU: the story of a Catalan woman of African descent

El Nacional, 10 April 2022: Ennatu Domingo: “You can’t see me as a person you saved”

La Vanguardia, 28 March 2022: Ennatu Domingo: “My African mother died at my age, 25 years old”

Zenda Libros, 28 March 2022: Ennatu Domingo: “I am making visible the many experiences of young immigrants”

More 324, 21 March 2022: Ennatu Domingo presents the biography Burnt eucalyptus wood. A story about origins and identities


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