America Libre

Raul Ramos y. Sanchez, Author . Grand Central $13.99 (373p) ISBN 978-0-446-50775-2

Sanchez's debut is a sweeping, intense novel of extremism, fear and consequences. In Los Angeles in the near future, tensions run high between Hispanics and Anglos, especially after the death of an innocent Latina bystander in Texas sparks nationwide riots. In need of a job, ex-Army Ranger Manolo “Mano” Suaraz joins La Defensa del Pueblo, started by wealthy Ramon Garcia to foster Hispanic unity in the face of Anglo violence. Despite his wife's growing reservations, Mano and the group are able to turn Hispanic gangs into allies against a common enemy. As violence and fear escalate—and are manipulated—“Quarantine Zones” and camps are created to segregate Hispanics from the general population. Mano, who dedicated his life to patriotism, sees his own country turn on him because of his heritage, disregarding his value as an individual. Originally self-published, Ramos y Sanchez's ambitious, cautionary tale poses questions without easy answers, but its flaw, ironically, is the lack of diversity, with all the characters being either Hispanic or Anglo. (July)

Reviewed on: 05/25/2009
Release date: 07/01/2009
Genre: Fiction
Open Ebook - 294 pages - 978-0-446-55147-2
Ebook - 199 pages - 978-0-446-79990-4
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