Title: American Dirt
Authors: Cummins, Jeanine
Genre: Fiction
Pages: 378
Year: 2020
Language: English
Description: The afternoon of her niece's fifteenth birthday party, all Lydia's worst nightmares come true. As she and her son Luca cower in a bathroom shower stall, the rest of her family is gunned down by members of Acapulco's most notorious drug cartel, to make an example of her journalist husband. Lydia's survival instincts kick in immediately, and before the bodies of her family have cooled on the patio, she and Luca are fleeing for their lives. Such is the reach of the cartels, with roadblocks on every highway and the police in their pay, that Lydia quickly realises two things: that they must cross the US/Mexico border as quickly as possible, and that they cannot risk travelling by road.

For Lydia and Luca, the most dangerous route is the only route - riding illegally atop the freight trains, known as la bestia, hidden amongst the thousands of migrants who will risk everything in the desperate hope of a new start in the United States. [Taken from book blurb, Headline Publishing]

Comments from BDS Reviewers:

"This book is a page-turner; a literary achievement; it is filled with poignancy, drama and humanity on every page."

"This is a deeply moving story with the full panoply of mankind at its best and worst in sensitive but detailed prose and narration. An excellent read."

"American Dirt is not an easy read, but it's an engrossing, important one."

"Well-written book. I felt as though I walked every step with Lydia."

"There is no way you will read this book and not be changed by it."

"A powerful, emotional account of a woman's fear and desperation."

"Easily one of the most thought-provoking and stunning stories I have ever read. I was captured by page one and it never let go."

"The author makes this very current narrative so real it is chilling to read."

"Impeccably researched which gives the book a full flavour but the beauty and the horror of it all comes across because the writing, the sense of it, is stunningly authentic."
Categories: Fiction, Contemporary, Grief/loss, Social commentary/perspectives, Mexico, America, 2021 Titles - Coming Soon


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