American Dirt

American Dirt

Book - 2020
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Lydia Quixano Pérez lives in the Mexican city of Acapulco. She runs a bookstore. She has a son, Luca, the love of her life, and a wonderful husband who is a journalist. And while there are cracks beginning to show in Acapulco because of the drug cartels, her life is, by and large, fairly comfortable. Even though she knows they'll never sell, Lydia stocks some of her all-time favorite books in her store. And then one day, a man enters the shop to browse and comes up to the register with a few books he would like to buy, two of them her favorites. Javier is erudite. He is charming. And, unbeknownst to Lydia, he is the jefe of the newest drug cartel which has gruesomely taken over the city. When Lydia's husband's tell-all profile of Javier is published, none of their lives will ever be the same. Forced to flee, Lydia and eight-year-old Luca soon find themselves miles and worlds away from their comfortable middle-class existence. Instantly transformed into migrants, Lydia and Luca ride La Bestia, trains which make their way north toward the United States, which is the only place Javier's reach doesn't extend. As they join the countless people trying to reach el norte, Lydia soon sees that everyone is running from something. But what exactly are they running to?
Publisher: New York : Flatiron Books, 2020
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9781250209764
Characteristics: 386 p. ; 25 cm
Alternative Title: American dirt : a novel


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Nov 23, 2020

There is a lot of controversy about this book, which I read up on while I started reading. The author is not herself an immigrant, and that's where the controversy arises. I think if you keep that in mind - meaning don't take everything totally to heart or pass judgment based on the book, then you are in for quite the ride. It's very well-written, gripping, disturbing!, and thrilling. I would say it's about as disturbing as some Stephen King novels. If you're okay with that, then it's definitely worth the read.

Nov 12, 2020

One of the most moving books I've read in my life time the author dose not disappoint! Gave me a whole new perspective on immigrants. Wish the author dose include as many Mexican dialogue as it has in the book. For a non-fluent person I found the words effecting my enjoyment with the book

mazinwhistler Nov 04, 2020

This story is not for the faint hearted - from the first page to the last you are on the edge of your seat. Will they survive? Will they make it to 'El Norte'? What horrible things will happen on their journey? Will the cartel finally catch them? Despite the controversy surrounding this book (white female author writing about Mexican migrant experiences) this is a great read for a work fiction. If you are looking for non-fiction on this topic - they are out there but are most likely much harder to stomach.

VaughanPLTiziana Oct 26, 2020

A gripping work of fiction about a mother and son's journey to flee the Mexican cartel. One particular quote that resonated with me: "Lydia is dubious at first, but if you can't trust a librarian, who can you trust?"

ReadingAdviser_Lori Oct 21, 2020

This is an eye-opening book about the multitude of dangers that migrants face every day. It is also a story about a mother's love for her son and the strength of the human spirit.

Oct 19, 2020

This story reads like a work of nonfiction: real to life and accurate. It is a story about illegall immigrants from Mexico and Central America. Specifically, it is about a woman, her 8 year old son, and two teenage girls who are fleeing the violence in their communities. This novel was well researched. PLUS, it is a great read--never a boring moment.

Oct 15, 2020

A moving story, I couldn't put it down. I believe the author achieved her goal in writing this novel.

Oct 12, 2020

Just the best read I've had for a very long time.

Oct 02, 2020

It is uncanny that this book was written before the 'Caravans' became a reality. Lydia and Luca escape death in Acapulco since they were in the Bathroom when members of a Drug Cartel came and brutally shot fifteen members of their family. Since then they are on the run with one goal - to reach the United States. Will they do it? Will they live the dream? You will have to read the book - probably in one sitting - to find out and it will be well worth it.

Sep 30, 2020

Wonderful book. Important book. Changed the way I view the immigrant journey.

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VaughanPLTiziana Oct 26, 2020

"Lydia is dubious at first, but if you can't trust a librarian, who can you trust?" -pg. 375

Apr 06, 2020

"Every day a fresh horror, and when it's over, this feeling of surreal detachment. A disbelief, almost, in what they just endured. The mind is magical. Human beings are magical.”

Mar 03, 2020

“There’s a wonderful piece of graffiti on the border wall in Tijuana…. TAMBIÉN DE ESTE LADO HAY SUEÑOS. On this side, too, there are dreams.” - Author’s Note p. 383

Mar 03, 2020

“That these people would leave their homes, their cultures, their families, even their languages, and venture into tremendous peril, risking their very lives, all for the chance to get to the dream of some faraway country that doesn’t even want them.” - p. 94


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Nov 12, 2020

Mich321 thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over


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