The Undocumented Americans
If you finish the year only reading one more book, let this be the one. Karla Cornejo Villavicencio is a powerhouse of a writer blending personal narrative with powerful reporting. I hesitate to call it reporting because it is so deeply personal and filled with such deep love and care. “Reporting” can seem detached. But there is none of that here, and rightfully so. She tells the stories of several undocumented Americans throughout the country’s landscape while weaving in her own personal history. It’s filled with anger and rage but also tenderness and love. Anything I say won’t do it justice. But please just go read it. Make sure you listen to @thestackspod episodes surrounding this book as it brings so much layer and depth to the understanding. Traci Thomas interviews the writer herself in one episode and @lupita.reads in two others. Lupita Aquino was a champion of this book from the very beginning. Thank you so much for letting us all be a part of the journey too. I feel like it’d be wrong to not also shout out @booksteahenny for also making sure this book got the recognition it deserved.
When I finished the last paragraph I had to sit and cry. I thought of my own mom coming here when she was 26 years old. I’ll never forget how shocked I was when I learned she came here under not-so-legal ways, I won’t elaborate here. I was surprised that my mom had broken the law. But what other choice did she have? She just wanted a better life, who the fuck doesn’t and who is anyone to say they’re not allowed?? She didn’t share with me her immigrant story until I was much older and even now there are so many pieces missing. But I’m lucky, my mom is a citizen now, and has been for awhile. I don’t know where I’m going with this but I love my mom and I’m thankful for her sacrifice. I just wish I knew more, but maybe it’s just something she doesn’t want to talk about. Anyways. Read the book. #becauseoflatinxreaders #bookstagram #readmorebooks #readersofinstagram #losangelesreaders #filipinobookstagrammer #alwaysbereading #alwaysbelearning #decolonizethecurriculum