Genre Fiction with Hispanic Characters
For this year's Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15 - October 15), the national theme is "Hispanics: A legacy of history, a present of action and a future of success. " According to the Census, 16% of the US population are of Hispanic/Latino origin. Several months ago, I attended a forum in the Bronx on why young people are no longer reading. One idea coming out of that session was that people don't read because they don't see themselves represented in the literature. With that in mind, I decided to change my "looking for a book to read" strategy (I normally do genre or author searches or just browse the shelves and read blurbs on the back of books to find one that captures my interest). This time I was looking for books with Hispanic characters, not necessarily "Immigrant Experience books" but other genres featuring Hispanic characters. I did a keyword search in the catalog and also Googled "Hispanic fiction" and "Latina fiction." I didn't find very many, but if you're are looking, here is a list of some I've recently read and enjoyed:
The Director's Cut by Janice Thompson. 2012. (Fiction)
Tia Morales has grown up in a poor neighborhood in Los Angeles. With hard work, discipline and determination, she is now a successful television director in Hollywood. As the successful one in the family Tia is trying to help out her siblings who are not doing so well and trying to bring order to her family - the same way she does on the set. But it is not working as well. Her Mom wants Tia to find love, but is Tia open to finding love?
Lonestar Sanctuary by Colleen Coble. 2007. (Romantic Suspense)
Allie Siders has nowhere to hide. Her parents died in a plane crash and her sister is killed. A faceless stalker who claims responsibility for their deaths is now after her. Allie is terrified, not only for herself but her five- year- old daughter. Her husband Jon who died in Afghanistan had told her told if she ever needed help to go to Lonestar Sanctuary and seek out Rick Bailey. While Elijah DeAngelo, the ranch owner is welcoming, Allie cannot understand why Jon would have her seek out the unfriendly tight-lipped foreman Rick Bailey.
Murder in Miami by Noel Hynd. 2012 (Suspense Fiction)
Federal Agent Alejandra DaLuca is on the trail of the powerful money laundering Dosi family whose organization has tentacles spanning the globe. The Dosi family will stop at nothing to have Alex out of their way. With one failed attempt on her life, she is aware there is a bullet with her name on it. Her informant was brutally murdered minutes before their scheduled meeting - the promised list of names undelivered. Now she has an offer to leave New York and head to Miami to communicate with her dead informant. Will a Santeria séance at midnight give her the answers she is seeking or is this a setup by the powerful Dosi family.
Random Family: Love, Drugs, Trouble and Coming of Age in the Bronx by Adrian Nicole LeBlanc. 2004 (History)
Adrian Nicole LeBlanc follows three generations of two Puerto Rican families in the Bronx, through their cycle of bad choices, poverty and hope. An excellent and honest portrayal of life in the ghetto.
Sixty Acres and a Bride by Regina Jennings. 2012. (Historical Fiction/Romance)
After the death of her husband and father-in-law in Mexico, Rosa moves back to Texas with her mother-in-law to start a new life. Upon arriving they found out they are in danger of losing their Texas farm due to taxation. Rosa has no other home and is desperate to save their farm. A Tex/Mex version of the Biblical Ruth and Naomi story with a twist. For Wes, the widowed family leader and care-taker, Rosa is family and to be taken care of—but will Wes go as far as Boaz?
Sworn to Protect by DiAnn Mills. 2010. (Suspense Fiction)
Danika Morales is a Border Patrol Agent - a widow with a young daughter. Her husband Toby was killed two years ago trying to protect illegal immigrants. His murder is still unsolved. Now someone is out to kill Danika. Who can she trust? Suspense laden with good insight into border patrol operations.
What other titles would you suggest?
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