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Set in the world of Victorian England Jago tells the story of 11-year-old Demelza Cotton and Jago Quinn, a pair of street urchins who roam the streets of London’s Old Nichol slum. I was impressed by this book on many levels, not least because this work is self-published … with richly drawn characters in an unforgettable landscape, Austin takes his readers on a memorable and fast-paced journey into a slightly steampunk and Dickensesque world.  A must-have title for every school library.

JAGO is available direct from

Keith Austin on

(A$15 plus P&P).



From Oscar Finn, aged 10: “I've now finished Jago Snow White and Grymm. Jago is my favourite but they are amazing. I loved JAGO because I read a lot about vampires and it was confusing but then right at the end it all clicked in place especially why the lizards skin fell away. I also liked the eyeallers they reminded me a little bit of Doctor Who. If you write any more I’m going to be the first person to buy it.”

ELLEN WELDEN, aged 11, reviewed it thus for her school library: “I found this book one of the best books I have EVER read (it’s quite hard to be that.) The author Keith Austin gave me clear pictures in my mind of every setting and was begging me to turn the page.

“Now the ending is quite weird but the book in a whole was AMAZING. I recommend this book for children who like historical crossed with fantasy books (like me) and years 5-7.”

WHATSGOODTODO said: “I loved this story, I loved how real it felt as they search for their beloved creature that is stolen from them whilst trying to outwit the vicious Cray Twins, you find yourself really rooting for them to win!

“You will be both terrified and aching for more as you read this story, willing our characters on and wishing for a happy ever after, it makes you feel like you are in the heart of the East End even if you have never visited or experienced it, it takes you back to a time of dirt and grit and love.

“My favourite character was Adamina Wollondily, I don’t want to say much about her but she isn’t all that meets the eye and as she seems, this book is beautifully written and heart stopping at times, the ending is remarkable."


Tanya Grech Welden conversation on Facebook: “I know its hardly a Newberry Medal, but my son told me this morning that "Grymm" and "JAGO" have made it to the "Most Borrowed Shelf" at school (St Francis Xaviers Regional Catholic School). Apparently the children are eagerly talking about your books and you have developed a bit of a cult following.


"After this Ellen and I were talking about your books. She insists that JAGO is her favourite, I tend to agree. We nailed it down to your characters, utterly unforgettable, Then we went on to discuss how you can read lots of books and very few character will stay with you once the book is closed. We decided that this is a hallmark of every great book.She then went on to name characters from books she has read...of course Demelza."

Gripping, atmospheric and wonderfully imaginative story following two young ragamuffins in a magical version of East London early last century. Terrifying adversaries and adventures stand between them and their goal of simply making a living - and when they steal a beautiful new creature, the stakes are raised even further.

I loved reading this book - a great imagination is at work here, creating strong characters, fantastic twists and turns and painting a picture of an surreal and yet convincing East End of London.
And the tension kept up right up to the unexpected and shocking denouement.


A superior and multi-colourful vision of London's East End. JAGO weaves and winds and always surprises. Believable characters and an unexpected ending. Absolutely brilliant!

Amazing read. Took me away from the world and into a nightmare, circus spectacular. Highly recommended.

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