Thursday, June 5, 2014

THE BOOK OF UNKNOWN AMERICANS: A REVIEW AND GIVEAWAY

GIVEAWAY ENDED
THE BOOK OF UNKNOWN AMERICANS
BY CRISTINA HENRIQUEZ

ABOUT THE BOOK:
A boy and a girl who fall in love. Two families whose hopes collide with destiny. An extraordinary novel that offers a resonant new definition of what it means to be American.

Arturo and Alma Rivera have lived their whole lives in Mexico. One day, their beautiful fifteen-year-old daughter, Maribel, sustains a terrible injury, one that casts doubt on whether she’ll ever be the same. And so, leaving all they have behind, the Riveras come to America with a single dream: that in this country of great opportunity and resources, Maribel can get better.

When Mayor Toro, whose family is from Panama, sees Maribel in a Dollar Tree store, it is love at first sight. It’s also the beginning of a friendship between the Rivera and Toro families, whose web of guilt and love and responsibility is at this novel’s core.

Woven into their stories are the testimonials of men and women who have come to the United States from all over Latin America. Their journeys and their voices will inspire you, surprise you, and break your heart. 

Suspenseful, wry and immediate, rich in spirit and humanity, The Book of Unknown Americans is a work of rare force and originality.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Cristina HenrĂ­quez is the author of the story collection Come Together, Fall Apart, which was a New York Times Editors’ Choice selection, and the novel The World in Half. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The American Scholar, Glimmer Train, Virginia Quarterly Review, Ploughshares, TriQuarterly, AGNI, and Oxford American, as well as in various anthologies. She lives in Illinois. Please visit the author's website "Bio" HERE to learn much more by this amazing artist.

PRAISE FOR THE BOOK OF AMERICANS:
"A triumph of storytelling. Henriquez pulls us into the lives of her characters with such mastery that we hang on to them just as fiercely as they hang on to one another and their dreams. This passionate, powerful novel will stay with you long after you've turned the final page." -Ben Fountain, author of Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk

"Evoking a profound sense of hope, Henriquez delivers a moving account of those who will do anything to build a future for their children-even if it means confronting the fear and alienation lurking behind the American dream." -Publishers Weekly


"Spectacular . . . highly believable and poignant . . . A well-written story set among 'unknown Americans,' ostensibly Hispanic but in many ways any family adjusting to a new culture and way of life, regardless of ethnicity." -Lawrence Olszewski, Library Journal

“A novel as disturbing as it is beautiful: a testament to the mixed blessings our country offers immigrants, who struggle against bigotry and economic hardship while maintaining just enough hope to keep striving for something better. A narrative mosaic that moves toward a heartrending conclusion.” —Daniel A. Olivas, The Los Angeles Review of Books

MY THOUGHTS/REVIEW:
Christina Henriquez's THE BOOK OF UNKNOWN AMERICANS is an unforgettable story seemingly ripped from current issues facing our world but given so much emotional power that it grabs the reader from the start. The Rivera family could be any family who has journeyed to America seeking those idealistic streets of gold in order to to give their family a better life. 

Alma and Arturo Rivera arrive with the hope that their journey will result in a miracle for their daughter Maribel's health and therefore her life. They come from their old country to find themselves in an apartment building filled with families like themselves...all here for different reasons, but all sharing the same desires for a new chance. Enter Mayor Toro, from one of these neighboring families, who has come from Panama for similar reasons, and the instantaneous attraction and love for Maribel is at the heart of this story. 

Henriquez creates such profound mental images that the reader is transported and will find it hard to tear themselves away from this page turner. Her use of many others' struggles adds to the authenticity of THE BOOK OF UNKNOWN AMERICANS. Profound, relative, and just a great character study and flowing story line make THE BOOK OF UNKNOWN AMERICANS a great way to start off one's summer reading journey. 
GIVEAWAY
 THANKS TO DANIELLE AND THE FINE FOLKS AT
RANDOM HOUSE PUBLISHING, I HAVE ONE COPY
OF THIS FASCINATING BOOK TO 
GIVE AWAY TO ONE LUCKY WINNER!
  
--U.S. RESIDENTS ONLY
--NO P. O. BOXES, PLEASE
--INCLUDE EMAIL ADDRESS IN COMMENT
--ALL ENTRIES/COMMENTS MUST BE 
SEPARATE IN ORDER TO COUNT 
AS MORE THAN ONE ENTRY
HOW TO ENTER:
+1 ENTRY: COMMENT ON SOMETHING YOU FOUND INTERESTING ABOVE ABOUT THE BOOK OF UNKNOWN AMERICANS THAT WOULD MAKE YOU WANT TO WIN THIS BOOK

+1 MORE ENTRY: BLOG OR TWEET ABOUT THIS GIVEAWAY AND LEAVE A LINK I CAN FOLLOW IN THE ENTRY

+1 MORE ENTRY: COMMENT ON SOMETHING YOU FIND INTERESTING ON CHRISTINA HENRIQUEZ'S WEBSITE BY GOING HERE

+1 MORE ENTRY: COMMENT ON ONE OTHER CURRENT GIVEAWAY YOU HAVE ENTERED ON MY BLOG. IF YOU ENTERED MORE THAN ONE, YOU CAN COMMENT ON EACH ON SEPARATELY AND GAIN MORE ENTRIES THAT WAY 

+1 MORE ENTRY: COMMENT ON ONE WAY YOU FOLLOW MY BLOG. IF YOU FOLLOW MORE THAN ONE WAY, YOU CAN COMMENT SEPARATELY AND EACH WILL COUNT AS AN ENTRY
GIVEAWAY ENDS AT
 6 PM, EST, JUNE 18
GOOD LUCK!

63 comments:

Steve Capell said...

I like your post on this novel and it sounds like a book that I would really enjoy. Thanks for the opportunity.

Steven.capell@gmail.com

Patricia said...

Your review was very compelling. I love that it is a page turner and a thoughtful exploration of what it means to be an American.

patricia dot mariani dot esq at g mail dot com

traveler said...

This books sounds captivating. thanks. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

traveler said...

I am an e-mail subscriber. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

traveler said...

I entered A Child's introduction to art. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

traveler said...

I entered A Tiger's tale. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

traveler said...

I entered Board Stiff. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

traveler said...

I entered Astonish Me. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

traveler said...

I entered Field of Prey. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

traveler said...

The author has written in many magazines and is talented. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

petite said...

I enjoyed your review. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

petite said...

I am a follower. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

petite said...

I am an e-mail subscriber. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

petite said...

Entered Fields of Prey. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

petite said...

Entered A Child's Introduction to art. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

petite said...

Entered A Tiger's Tale. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

petite said...

Entered Astonish Me. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

petite said...

Entered Board Stiff. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

petite said...

Cristina has written non-fiction and fiction. a wonderful creative individual. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

Carol N Wong said...

I love to read stories about immigrants. When I was doing volunteer literacy teaching, I got to meet a lot of people from Mexico and Central America. I added this book to my wish list because I know a lot of people would want to win this book. I am positive based on your review that I would love this book.

CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

Carol N Wong said...

I tweeted: http://t.co/GmLH1uYvRU

CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

Carol N Wong said...

I read the interview of the author and her answers. She said this book was inspired by her father. He came from Panama to get a college degree and ended up becoming a citizen.

My husband is a immigrant. His application for citizenship got lost in the system for 10 whole years. I went with him to downtown LA and walked with him as he tried to go onto the next step in immigration. He had submitted a photo for his application and he kept getting letters saying that there was something wrong with his application. They did not say that they had lost the photo! We finally found out what wrong and submitterd a new one. My husband is one of those unknown Americans.

CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

Carol N Wong said...

I entered for "A Child's Interoduction to Art".

CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

Carol N Wong said...

I entered for "A Tiger's Tale".

CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

Carol N Wong said...

I entered for "Board Stiff".

CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

Carol N Wong said...

I entered for "Simply Stitched".

CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

Carol N Wong said...

I follow with an e-mail subscription.
CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

Carol N Wong said...

I follow with Facebook.
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Carol N Wong said...

I follow with a RSS feed on my Yahoo page.
CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

Carol N Wong said...

I follow with Google Friends Connect.
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Carol N Wong said...

I follow with Networked Blogs
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Carol N Wong said...

I follow with Twitter.
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Carol N Wong said...

+5 June FB Bonus Entry #1

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Margie said...

This sounds like a fascinating story about immigrant life in the US. Thanks for the giveaway. Interesting review.
mtakala1 AT yahoo DOT com

Margie said...

E-mail subscriber
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Facebook fan
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RSS read
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Network blogs follower
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GFC FOLLOWER
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Margie said...

FB fan 1
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FB fan 4
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FB fan 5
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Margie said...

The author was featured in Virginia Quarterly Review as one of “Fiction’s New Luminaries." Very impressive.
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Margie said...

entered Introduction to Art
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Margie said...

entered Tiger's Tale
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Margie said...

entered Field of Prey
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Barbara T. said...

I would like to learn more about their culture.

Margie said...

Entered Tempest in a Teapot
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techeditor said...

The most interesting thing about this book, to me, is the traumatic head injury suffered by one character and the resulting feelings of her parents. This interests me because I, too, had this happen to me about 30 years ago. I wonder how true to actual results the author is.

techeditor said...

I'm always interested in whether authors I read will have a book event near where I live. So I checked EVENTS on this author's Web site, and, so far, she has no plans to come to Michigan. I hope that changes.

techeditor said...

I entered the giveaway contest for DELICIOUS.

techeditor said...

I follow this blog by email.

techeditor said...

I follow this blog on Facebook.

Margie said...

Entered Razing the Dead.
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Sue Farrell said...

This sounds like a book that is very timely and totally up with current events.
suefarrell.farrell@gmail.com

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