Summer Reading-Latino Lit Lista

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The summer solstice is on the horizon and with it the long summer days. Aromas of grilled corn, the juicy taste of fruit popsicles, lounging at the beach or backyard, and a good book have me anticipating the weeks ahead.

The annual “summer reading list,” has been a feature in many magazines, from Latina to Cosmo and Oprah. These books are usually quick read paperbacks that are about ‘lighter’ topics. And they’re all good lists, however I offer you one more:

The 2012-2013 award winning books written by Latina/o authors.

Whether you are Latina/o or not, think about using this lista as an opportunity to explore different themes in the Latina/o experience, discover multi-cultural characters, and peek into other worlds that may be dissimilar to your own, but resonant with universal themes important to all of us.

This list ranges from adventure to suspense:
  1. MISSING IN MACHU PICCHU-Cecilia Velastegui’s. Action/Romance “…four thirty-something professional women embark on (a) hike to help them confront their online dating dependency, only to find themselves victims of a predator’s ruse, and soon in a fight for their very lives.”

  2. THE LOST-Caridad Piñero. Action/Paranormal Romance. “Home from combat in Iraq, Bobbie Carerra wants only peace, (she finds herself) in a terrifying battle against paranormal enemies who hide in plain sight.”
  3. DESPERADO-A MILE HIGH NOIR-Manuel Ramos. Crime novel. “Money, sex and greed…theft of the sacred tilma of our Lady of Guadalupe and drug cartels…”
  4. THE SANDOVAL SISTERS’ SECRET OF OLD BLOODSandra Ramos O’Briant. Historical fiction set in 1800’s.…sisters are caught in the crosshairs…of the Mexican-American War…from two important fronts-New Mexico and Texas. Their money and ancient knowledge offer some protection, but their lives are changed forever.”
  5. THE OLD MAN’S LOVE STORY-Rudolfo Anaya. Fiction. “The nameless narrator…shares his most intimate thoughts about his wife, their life together, and her death. But just as death is inseparable from life, his wife seems still to be with him. Her memory and words permeate his days.”

  6. THE DISTANCE BETWEEN US-Memoir. Reyna Grande. “… a story of a childhood spent torn between two parents and two countries.”
  7. WE THE ANIMALS-Justin Torres. Memoir. “… the chaotic heart of one family, the intense bonds of three brothers, and the mythic effects of this fierce love on the people we must become.”
  8. EVERY LAST SECRET-Mystery. Linda Rodriguez. “…police chief Skeet Bannion(finds herself in a race) against the clock to solve a series of linked murders… before her best friend winds up in jail—or worse.”
  9. HOW FIRE IS A STORY, WAITING-Melinda Palacio. Poetry. “… (she) creates images that are at once heartbreaking and humorous….elemental subjects of family and childhood…and celebrates the women who came before her.
  10. THE SECOND TIME WE MET-Leila Cobo. Fiction. “…a graceful, skillfully woven tale of Rita and the son who comes to find her more than two decades later.”  
  11. MAP OF THE SKY- Felix J. Palma. Sci-Fi. “What if the events of H.G. Wells “War of the Worlds” became true…this is the result.”
  12. MAYA’S NOTEBOOK-Isabelle Allende. Suspense. “… (when her grandfather dies) Maya turns to drugs, alcohol, and petty crime…Lost in a dangerous underworld,…—a gang of assassins, the police, the FBI, and Interpol. (She) escapes to a remote island off the coast of Chile. Here, Maya …embarks on her greatest adventure: the journey into her own soul.”
There’s a book genre for everyone. So far I’ve read five of the 12 books and plan to read five more, maybe squeeze in the whole list. 

If you’re looking for a list of children’s books here’s a link to Latino Childrens Summer Reading List.

If you have any books with multi-cultural characters, settings or storylines, please add them in the comment section. My TBR list is ever growing. 


Happy reading.


Categories: Books, Latina writer, Latino children summer reading list, Latino culture, Latino Literature, Literacy, Summer Reads 2013

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