Boston Public Library
BOOKS ABOUT THE HISPANIC EXPERIENCE
‘Latino Life’ is a list of recent books concerning the Latino experience, and is
published as part of the Boston Public Library's observance of Hispanic Heritage
Month each year.
appropriate for Teens
+ available in Spanish or bilingual
American Victory: Wrestling, Dreams, and a Journey Toward Home
by Henry Cejudo with Bill Plaschke
Memoir of the son of illegal Mexican immigrants who rose from the mean streets of Los Angeles to become an Olympic gold medalist.
+ The Autobiography of Fidel Castro (English)
La Autobiografía de Fidel Castro (Spanish)
by Norberto Fuentes
Former Cuban Revolution member Fuentes, now living in exile, presents a many-sided, complex Castro in this imaginative and entertaining account.
Che Guevara: A Life
by Nick Caistor
The iconic rebel who came to embody the spirit of the Cuban revolution is portrayed as neither saint nor devil,
but as wholly human.
Evo Morales: The Extraordinary Rise of the First Indigenous President of Bolivia
by Martín Sivak
An insider biography of the leader whose mandate for political, economic, and social change has made him one of Latin America’s most controversial contemporary figures.
Family Sentence: The Search for My Cuban-Revolutionary, Prison-Yard,
Mythic-Hero, Deadbeat Dad
by Jeanine Cornillot
The author’s dreams of her absent father shift dramatically throughout her childhood as she visits him during his long prison sentence.
The Infiltrator: My Secret Life Inside the Dirty Banks Behind Pablo Escobar’s Medellin Cartel
by Robert Mazur
The author’s five years undercover within the Colombian drug cartels resulted in the takedown of one of the largest money-laundering operations of all time.
* Leaving Glorytown:
One Boy’s Struggle Under Castro
by Eduardo F. Calcines
A young boy’s world is torn apart when his parents decide to escape Communist Cuba and he must leave behind his beloved grandparents.
+ Paulo Coelho: A Warrior’s Life: The Authorized Biography (English)
El Mago: la extraordinaria historia de Paulo Coelho (Spanish)
by Fernando Morais
Between his childhood in Rio de Janeiro and his worldwide acclaim as the author of The Alchemist came mental institutions, shock therapy, drugs, prison, and spiritual awakening.
Victory Road: The Ride of My Life
by Helio Castroneves with Marissa Matteo
He rose from the go-cart tracks of Brazil to the top as an Indianapolis 500 champion—then a federal indictment almost ended his career.
Why This World: A Biography of Clarice Lispector
by Benjamin Moser
The turbulent life of the Ukrainian Jewish woman who immigrated to Brazil and became one of Latin America’s greatest and most enigmatic modernist writers.
The Art of Jaime Hernandez: The Secrets of Life and Death
by Jaime Hernandez, selection and commentary by Todd Hignite
Profiles the author and illustrator of Love and Rockets, one of the first comic books to feature strong Latina characters.
Culture is Our Weapon: Making Music and Changing Lives in Rio de Janeiro
by Patrick Neate and Damian Platt
Former drug dealers from the shantytowns of Rio came together to form AfroReggae, using music and education to help at-risk teens.
Daisy: Morning, Noon, and Night: Bringing Your Family Together with Everyday Latin Dishes
by Daisy Martinez with Chris Styler
Traveling with her family to Spain, the Dominican Republic, Peru, and Argentina, Daisy picked up over 150 recipes; here she shares simplified versions for busy cooks.
+ Diario de Oaxaca (English & Spanish)
by Peter Kuper
In this dazzling annotated sketchbook filled with evocative, colorful illustrations, Kuper chronicles the two years he spent in Oaxaca.
+ Finding Frida Kahlo: In Mexico, Fifty-Five Years After the Death of Frida Kahlo, in San Miguel de Allende (English & Spanish)
by Barbara Levine with Stephen Jaycox
Photographs of diaries, letters, drawings, and mementos allegedly from Kahlo’s personal archive offer an intimate glimpse into her life and work.
+ Fresh Mexico: 100 Simple Recipes for True Mexican Flavor (English)
México fresco : 100 recetas sencillas con auténtico sabor Mexicano (Spanish)
by Marcela Valladolid
The host of the TV shows Mexican Made Easy and Relatos con Sabor shares her secrets for healthy, fast, and easy-to-prepare meals.
The Lesser Tragedy of Death
by Cristina García
Poems by the author of Dreaming in Cuban detail her brother’s battles with addiction and crime, as well as her own struggle to make sense of it all.
+ The Oxford Book of Latin American Poetry: A Bilingual Anthology (Multilingual)
edited by Cecilia Vicuña and Ernesto Livon-Grosman
This comprehensive collection spans over 500 years and features over 125 poets, most notably pre-Columbian and indigenous writers often overlooked in other works.
Unforgettable You: Master the Elements of Style, Spirituality, and True Beauty
by Daisy Fuentes
A self-help and etiquette guide from the former MTV VJ.
HISTORY & CONTEMPORARY ISSUES
The Death of Josseline: Immigration Stories from the Arizona-Mexico Borderlands
by Margaret Regan
A close-up look from both sides at how policy changes affect immigration patterns and lead to more tragedies along the border.
The Eastern Stars: How Baseball Changed the Dominican Town of San Pedro de Macorís
by Mark Kurlansky
Seventy-nine men from San Pedro have played in the Major Leagues. One in six Dominicans who have done so is from this tiny region.
El Monstruo: Dread and Redemption in Mexico City
by John Ross
An American expatriate laments the increasing homogenization of Mexico City in this chronology of
events that have shaped the city’s remarkable history.
The Great Progression: How Hispanics Will Lead America to a New Era of Prosperity
by Geraldo Rivera
Through interviews with prominent Latinos, this book provides a look at the current influence of Hispanics and
a glimpse into a future greatly affected by their contributions.
+ Hot. Passionate. And Illegal? Why (Almost) Everything You Thought About Latinos Just May Be True (English)
Caliente. Apasionado. Ilegal? : por qué (casi) todo lo que los americanos piensan de los latinos quizás sea verdad (Spanish)
by Cristián de la Fuente and Federico Lariño
Chilean native de la Fuente dispels myths and stereotypes about Latinos with humor and includes stories of his acting and time on Dancing with the Stars.
Just Like Us: The True Story of Four Mexican Girls Coming of Age in America
by Helen Thorpe
Four Denver girls illustrate the importance of citizenship as two with legal status enjoy unlimited opportunities, while the others are left behind.
+ The Latina Guide to Health: Consejos and Caring Answers (English)
La guía de salud : consejos y respuestas para la mujer latina (Spanish)
by Jane L. Delgado
Based on the latest medical research regarding Latina health, this guide gives health and medical information specific to Latinas as well as advice for universal well-being.
Law of the Jungle: The Hunt for Colombian Guerrillas, American Hostages, and Buried Treasure
by John Otis
Kidnapped by guerrillas, the survivors of a Colombian plane crash endured abuse and neglect during their five-year wait for rescue.
+ The Rhythm of Success: How an Immigrant Produced His Own American Dream (English)
Ritmo al éxito : cómo un inmigrante hizo su propio sueño americano (Spanish)
by Emilio Estefan
In this combination business book and memoir, music and entertainment magnate Estefan uses his life story and ideas to motivate others.
When a Heart Turns Rock Solid: The Lives of Three Puerto Rican Brothers On and Off the Streets
by Timothy Black
The role of crime, family, and social institutions in the lives of three brothers reflect the pressure on young Puerto Ricans in the U.S.
Alone in the Crowd: An Inspector Espinosa Mystery
by Luiz Alfredo García-Roza
A woman is dead. Did she fall or was she pushed in front of that bus? Espinosa tackles a murder case with
no proof of a murder.
Amigoland: A Novel
by Oscar Casares
Two feisty, aging brothers, long-estranged, travel to Mexico to investigate a family legend at the heart of their dispute.
by Johnny Diaz
Carlos, a young Cuban-American mourning the recent loss of his mother, relocates to Boston and discovers
the gay social scene of his new home.
Beautiful María of My Soul, or, The True Story of María García y Cifuentes, the Lady Behind a Famous Song: A Novel
by Oscar Hijuelos
In a sequel of sorts to The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love, the muse of that novel, now sixty years old, reminisces about her days and nights in Havana.
+ The Black Minutes (English)
Los Minutos Negros (Spanish)
by Martín Solares
A surreal and wild ride by a debut Mexican writer and a must-read for crime fiction fans who enjoy complex plots and plenty of twists.
City of Silver: A Mystery
by Annamaria Alfieri
Counterfeit silver coins? Suicide or murder? Mother Maria Santa Hilda discovers secrets within her own convent which place her and all she cares for in peril.
* Damas, Dramas, and Ana Ruiz
by Belinda Acosta
All Ana wants is to have a traditional quinceañera for her daughter, Carmen, but a resentful Carmen refuses to celebrate.
Dancing with Butterflies: A Novel
by Reyna Grande
Four women in Los Angeles are bound together in friendship by their Mexican roots and their love of Folklórico dance.
Daughters of the Stone
by Dahlma Llanos-Figueroa
Stories, passed from mother to daughter through five generations of powerful Afro-Puerto Rican women, relate their heartbreaking physical and spiritual journeys.
Death at Solstice: A Gloria Damasco Mystery
by Lucha Corpi
The psychic investigator takes on a case involving stolen jewelry for winery owners in California, which leads to murder, kidnapping, and great danger.
The Disappearance of Irene Dos Santos
by Margaret Mascarenhas
Irene Dos Santos went missing in the Venezuelan rain forest. Fifteen years later her friend Lily is ready to uncover the truth about what happened.
Hasta La Vista, Lola!: A Lola Cruz Mystery
by Misa Ramirez
Need a salsa-dancing sleuth with a black-belt in kung-fu? Lola may be the most unusual detective, but she is also the most fun.
The Invisible Mountain
by Carolina De Robertis
Three generations of women in the Firielli family search for love and identity during the tumultuous political events of twentieth-century Uruguay.
Last Train from Cuernavaca
by Lucia St. Clair Robson
A wealthy and beautiful hotel owner and a young woman who has lost everything become engulfed in the Mexican Revolution in this gripping historical novel.
Lone Star Legend
by Gwendolyn Zepeda
Sandy’s work and personal life turn upside down in this amusing and clever novel of a blogger who reveals too much information online.
The Madonnas of Echo Park: A Novel
by Brando Skyhorse
This novel unfolds through beautifully vibrant stories that reveal the interconnected lives of Mexican Americans living in the Echo Park neighborhood of Los Angeles.
Mexico City Noir
edited by Paco Ignacio Taibo
The desolate streets and desperate lives that unfold in these twelve stories create a dramatic portrait of Mexico City’s darkest places.
by Roberto Bolaño
Paris, 1938: Poet César Vallejo is hiccupping himself to death. Mesmerist Pierre Pain is bribed
not to treat him but then becomes consumed with anxiety and guilt.
+ No Place for Heroes
Demasiados héroes (Spanish)
by Laura Restrepo
Politics and ideals collide when a mother and son travel to Buenos Aires to find the boy’s father, a former revolutionary in Argentina’s Dirty War.
Sudden Fiction Latino: Short-Short Stories from the United States and Latin America
edited by Robert Shapard, James Thomas, and Ray Gonzalez
Showcasing established and emerging writers, this book celebrates the craftsmanship of the short-short story through an array of genres and styles.
Sweet Mary: A Novel
by Liz Balmaseda
Dulce Maria Guevara is wrongly accused of being a cocaine dealer. Desperate to get her life back, she goes on a hunt for the real drug queen.
* The Time It Snowed in Puerto Rico
by Sarah McCoy
Verdita is a spirited eleven-year-old at odds with her mother and confused about life. Can she make peace with her family and discover her true self?
by Mario Acevedo
Vampire P.I. Felix Gomez is trying to prevent an all-out war between rival werewolf factions. Figuring out how just might get him killed.
Compiled by Boston Public Library staff:
Denise de Boer, Fields Corner Branch
Francie Francis, South Boston Branch
Amy Manson, Chairperson, Connolly Branch
Reader & Information Services, Central Library
Cordelia Sullivan, Lower Mills Branch