America's Dream

Esmeralda Santiago, Author
Esmeralda Santiago, Author HarperCollins Publishers $23 (0p) ISBN 978-0-06-017279-4
Reviewed on: 04/29/1996
Release date: 05/01/1996
Ebook - 336 pages - 978-0-06-184694-6
Paperback - 336 pages - 978-0-06-092826-1
Open Ebook - 336 pages - 978-0-06-143380-1
Paperback - 336 pages - 978-0-06-050884-5
Peanut Press/Palm Reader - 336 pages - 978-0-06-143383-2
Ebook - 336 pages - 978-0-06-143385-6
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Santiago, author of the memoir When I Was Puerto Rican, establishes herself as a strong and irresistible new voice in fiction with this story of a Puerto Rican woman who comes to America and discovers herself. America Gonzales, 30, cleans hotel rooms on the Puerto Rican island of Vieques. Her 14-year-old daughter, Rosalinda, has run away with a boyfriend, and America grieves that her daughter has not learned from her mistakes. America is, and has always been, Correa's woman, even though Correa has a wife and family a ferry ride away. Correa, the walking embodiment of blind, brutish machismo, comes to see America whenever he likes, sleeps in her bed and-as often as not-beats her. But an escape presents itself when the Leveretts, a young American couple whose kids America babysat when they stayed at the hotel, call from their Westchester home and ask her to be a nanny to their two young children. Her new life in suburbia and a tentative new love are overshadowed by the growing terror and certainty of a final reckoning with Correa. Lush descriptions of the sights, smells and sounds of the island pervade the early chapters; later, America's take on Westchester and her cousins in the Bronx is full of deliciously keen observations. As she charts America's emerging sense of self, Santiago shows us America's-and America's-life with wry insight. With its seamless construction, saucy dialect and clear prose, this novel is involving and immediate, truthful and tender. Major ad/promo; author tour; U.K. and translation rights: Aaron Priest agency; first serial and dramatic rights: Molly Friedrich. (May)
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