American Dirt by Jeanine Cummins

Tue, 03/17/2020 - 12:43pm -- JGranatino

Lydia Perez and her young son, Luca, are at a family cookout when gunfire erupts. Her husband is a reporter targeted for his work exposing members of a powerful Mexican cartel and while she and Luca hide in the shower, all other family members are murdered. After the massacre, Lydia realizes she is not safe and the two head “norte”, hoping to hide and start a new life in the United States. The journey is dangerous and they cannot trust anyone, since the cartel has insinuated itself into local law enforcement and anyone could be a spy. As they flee northward, Lydia and Luca encounter others who have left their homeland hoping for a better life, encountering “coyotes” who smuggle immigrants for a price as well as kidnappers who hold them for ransom. Cummins has written an extraordinary novel based on her research into the refugee experience from those fleeing violence in Mexico and Central America. Her characters are authentic and believable, and their stories both heartbreaking and uplifting. Highly recommended by this reviewer.  

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