Read Across a Hundred Mountains by Reyna Grande Online


"Across a Hundred Mountains" is a stunning and poignant story of migration, loss, and discovery as two women -- one born in Mexico, one in the United States -- find their lives joined in the most unlikely way.After a tragedy separates her from her mother, Juana Garcia leaves her small town in Mexico to find her father, who left his home and family two years before to find"Across a Hundred Mountains" is a stunning and poignant story of migration, loss, and discovery as two women -- one born in Mexico, one in the United States -- find their lives joined in the most unlikely way.After a tragedy separates her from her mother, Juana Garcia leaves her small town in Mexico to find her father, who left his home and family two years before to find work in America, "el otro lado," and rise above the oppressive poverty so many of his countrymen endure.Out of money and in need of someone to help her across the border, Juana meets Adelina Vasquez, a young woman who left her family in California to follow her lover to Mexico. Finding each other -- in a Tijuana jail -- in desperate circumstances, they offer each other much needed material and spiritual support and ultimately become linked forever in the most unexpected way.The phenomenon of Mexican immigration to the United States is one of the most controversial issues of our time. While it is often discussed in terms of the political and economic implications, Grande, with this brilliant debut novel and her own profound insider's perspective, puts a human face on the subject. Who are the men, women, and children whose lives are affected by the forces that propel so many to risk life and limb, crossing the border in pursuit of a better life?Take the journey "Across a Hundred Mountains" and see....

Title : Across a Hundred Mountains
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780743269575
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 259 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Across a Hundred Mountains Reviews

  • Shannon (Giraffe Days)
    2018-11-20 03:09

    Eleven year old Juana lives with her Amá and Apá in their little shack at the outskirts of their village in Mexico. On the night of a flood which enters their shack, her mother leaves Juana on top of the table holding the baby, Anita, to go look for her husband. Juana falls asleep and loses hold of the baby, which drowns. Now in debt again to the wealthiest man in the village, Don Elías, who paid for the funeral, Apá decides to risk everything and go to America to earn the money to pay off Don Elías.When no word comes from Apá - Miguel Garcia - the other villagers taunt Juana and her mother, Lupe, with the hideous word: abandoned. But there's still Don Elías to pay off, and there's only one thing he's asking for and one thing Lupe can give: her body. As her mother declines further into guilt, depression, craziness and alcohol, Juana never gives up hope that her father is just across the mountains, that he hasn't forgotten or abandoned them. Her determination to find him sees her travel to Mexico City, where she meets Adelina, who helps her find the coyote who helped her father cross the border. Simply told, Across a Hundred Mountains is a deceptively light, quick read. At its heart, it's beautiful. It has an interesting structure: instead of chapters, the story is told in short scenes from Juana and Adelina's two stories - Juana moving forward from the night of the flood, always in the right order, and Adelina moving back and forth in time, but mostly forward also, yet told from a dozen years in the future. Their stories don't converge until near the end, by which time you've figured out the twist already. I wish I could just spell it out so I could speak more freely about this novel, but I always try to avoid spoilers where I can. (The last thing I'd want to do is spoil the reading magic for anyone else!)Juana is such a wonderful protagonist, kind and compassionate, determined, vulnerable, strong, resilient. She's a real hero. I loved her to bits. Grande writes sparingly, with minimal adjectives and fairly sparse descriptions, but still the story, the setting, and the characters become vivid in your mind. Juana's voice grows and matures from a little girl trying to be strong to an adult woman trying to make up for the past. I tend to like more description, plumping out the setting and the characters, but interestingly enough the lack of denser prose worked very well here. Stripped down to the bare story, told with compassion and sympathy and yet also respectful distance, it becomes an unsentimental story, one stark and honest that lets you think for yourself and come closer to understanding the human side of the story of illegal immigrants.In this way, though it's clearly sympathetic to them, it manages to avoid a political agenda. Telling instead the story of these people, what they endure, what they live every day, and their motivations for going to a country that doesn't want them and treats them like cattle - it's sad and fascinating at the same time. (I couldn't help but think that if the Mexicans weren't exploited with poor wages at home, they wouldn't need to cross the border to earn money - of course, it's not that simple, and yet it is.)This is a delightful story, woven like a tapestry with a deft hand, wonderfully human and not at all self-indulgent.

  • Beth
    2018-12-11 08:13

    I read this book in 3 sittings because I could NOT put it down! This book jumps back and forth between chapters on "Juana" and "Adelina" and keeps you wondering what is happening to each character. It is a book that talks about poverty, relationships, and finding peace after a long rough journey. Quite a tear-jerker!

  • Jen C (ReadinginWBL)
    2018-12-08 07:08

    This is the story of migration, love and loss as two women (Adelina and Juana) find the path of their lives crossing. Juana’s family suffers a tragedy which greatly affects Juana’s relationship with her mother. Juana’s father, Miguel leaves to go to the United States to find work and money for the family. Juana and her mother struggle greatly in the absence of Miguel. After two years, Juana leaves Mexico to search for her father. Juana is befriended by a young woman, Adelina in a Tijuana jail. Adelina was born in the United States and came to Mexico with her boyfriend. The two make plans to leave their life in Mexico behind them and go to the United States. Juana is desperate to find her father and find out why he did not return to Mexico as he had promised. The story is told in alternating chapters by Juana the young girl living in Mexico in poverty with her mother and Adelina a 30 year old social worker in Los Angeles. This is a debut novel by Reyna Grande. I love discovering new authors! I can only imagine the Reyna Grande enhanced the story by using some of her personal life to shape this story. When Reyna was 5 years old her parents immigrated to the United States and left her and her siblings in the care of their grandmother. At the age of nine, Reyna immigrated to the United States to be with her parents. She currently resides in Los Angeles. Author’s Website is Review: This book was recommended to by my friend, Syd. I thought the writing was good. The book was engaging and had a good flow to the story. The descriptions of life in Mexico were interesting and heartbreaking. I felt a bit confused in the middle of the story by the alternating chapters by the two women, Juana and Adelina. The author quickly brings it all together and it all makes perfect sense. Once everything started to come together, I had a hard time putting the book down. Once again I stayed up too late reading!4/5 – Recommended/ A Good Read.

  • Gypsy Lady
    2018-12-02 10:07

    "The phenomenon of Mexican immigration to the United States is one of the most controversial issues of our time. While it is often discussed in terms of the political and economic implications, Grande, with this brilliant debut novel and her own profound insider's perspective, puts a human face on the subject. Who are the men, women, and children whose lives are affected by the forces that propel so many to risk life and limb, crossing the border in pursuit of a better life? "Take the journey Across a Hundred Mountains and see."

  • George
    2018-12-07 07:22

    CAPTIVATING, CLEVER and INTENSE.Reyna Grande’s novel, ‘Across a Hundred Mountains,’ is a heart-wrenching portrait of unimaginable hardship, tragedy and despair, cleverly and gracefully told through the stories of two young women—just girls, really—of Mexican heritage: Juana and Adelina. Not many novels can keep my eyeballs glued to the page so tightly that I read them in less than three days, but this one did.Recommendation: Should be read by all of us so blessed as to have been born to such incredible opportunity, without having to cross a hundred mountains.

  • Book Concierge
    2018-11-25 08:59

    Painful subject matter - two young women who search across the Mexico/US border for their fathers and for forgiveness. Juana is only 12 when her father leaves for "el otro lado" (the other side); when he hasn't returned in three years she sets out to find him. Adelina is am American running from a bad situation at home and now working as a prostitute in Tijuana. The girls meet up and try to help one another. Compelling story, but the author needs to work on her craft.

  • Ashley
    2018-12-05 06:23

    A breathtakingly, yet heartrendingly realistic story has made me go through many different emotions. A story of migration, love, and loss all bundled together with two ladies who have very different backgrounds, yet have many goals that cross one another. Juana, a very brave young lady who has seen the depths of despair. She and her family experiences a horrible tragedy that changed Juana's relationship of her mother. With the absence of her father, matters did not get any better. After being fed up with fact, she decides it was time to find her father. In the United States. Which is a totally different country and cultural background from Mexico. Juana later befriends Adeline, who came from the United States to Mexico for her boyfriend. The two decided, it was probably best for them to leave Mexico and restart in the U.S.The writing style was superb, and amazing. As expected of Reyna Grande. All though the story is told in two perspectives, the author quickly brings it all together in the end. The story is told in a way where I can sympathize greatly with the characters. The story mentions issues such as the obvious gap between the rich and poor. Whether it be the social aspect or economic income, it was all talked about in this story. Although the characters were fictional, the experiences were very real and realistic. If you like stories that give the truth in having a troubling Hispanic background and are very realistic fiction based, this is the book for you.

  • Carmen Cruz
    2018-11-24 03:20

    I thought it was great. I have my own history about Mexico, being a first generation Mexican-American, man of my mother and father's family now in the states came illegally and others came with papers thanks to either my mother of father after they obtained their citizenship. Thank you for this story, it confused me a little at the twist part but it was a wonderful turn.

  • Nicole Fredericks
    2018-11-30 07:13

    More like 3.5 stars.... I enjoyed the topic and really felt like the author did an exceptional job with the emotional aspect to this story. I think the concept of switching between the characters and then one character becomes the other was very interesting, but I found it to be confusing. Especially since it was not in chronological order.

  • Lisa
    2018-11-23 11:22

    Two and a half stars. The writing wasn't bad and it was a very quick read. I wasn't sure if the ending was supposed to be surprising or not. It seemed very obvious to me, but then took forever to get there. It was just a little too slow for me and the slowness was filled with a ton of depressing stuff. I would have liked to read more about the border crossing and how they adapted after crossing.

  • Eileen
    2018-12-04 11:18

    It was easy to read but the structure was very confusing. I got confused when I was reading about the two girls' stories. Three quarters of the way, I figured out why. One of the girls stole her friend's identity when her friend was killed. The surviving friend was having some misgivings about her relationship with her doctor boyfriend. He knew nothing of her past. Will she trust him with this info? Not sure.The book was very melodramatic. Hard to imagine that the characters could endure the various tragedies that befell them. It would be so awful to be poor with such limited options. Very believable that the mother lost her mind. She had so many losses in her life.I know that this book is fiction. I hope that people don't have to live like these characters. Somehow I'm afraid that they do.

  • Ashley Gardner
    2018-12-01 09:57

    While I enjoyed the story of these two women and found the interweaving of the tale entertaining, i did get somewhat confused during the tale. Certainly the struggle and the cruelty that we know occurs for the down-trodden trying to make a better life for themselves and their families, did ring true. The book was easy to read and kept my attention right to the end. Perhaps a little simplistic in the style itself. Is it a translation? That might be the reason. If you are interested in experiencing the difficulties of an immigrants challenges, a good read.

  • Denise
    2018-11-17 02:57

    As another reviewer said, "I really wanted to like this book more than I did.."So far, storyline is a bit confusing with 2 similar (? the same ?)characters; writing style is a bit flat.OK, done now. The topic of immigrants from MX being separated from their families back home and their culture is a very timely one and something that very much interests me. I have read other books, though, where I felt this was dealt with more compellingly. (E.g., High Wire Moon)

  • Anthony Malone
    2018-11-23 03:07

    As I began this book, honestly, I didn't think much of it. In this story, the point of view switches between Adelina, a young woman in LA looking for her father, and Juana, a young girl in Mexico, whose father leaves to the United States trying to find better work to pay off debt the family has accumulated through funeral services. While it first seems like this switch is simply writing 2 stories in the same book, it begins to make more connections between these two women as you read on. The author then reveals that these 2 women are, in fact, the same person. Juana had tried to leave to find her father in the United States, but didn't make it across the border. After finding a woman named Adelina Vasquez (Adelina's full name), she enters an unfortunate line of work trying to find her father's whereabouts. Adelina dies, and Juana takes her ID and begins to carry the name of Adelina, showing that the 2 stories are simply in terms of time (the "Adelina" POV was simply Juana's story ~20-30 years later).Besides from the POV switches, Reyna Grande used many different literary techniques, which work together to make this book 5/5 stars (on top of the compelling story). One thing Grande does is using some parts of the Spanish language in the story, but only in the way that a non-Spanish-speaker like myself can still understand what is happening. This is because it is mostly dialogue, which is still able to be interpreted through the surrounding text. This touch of bilingual dialogue allows for the story to have some context besides being a story about the troubles of illegal immigrants. Because of the combination of all of these aspects, the book comes together to be 5/5 stars.

  • Sharon
    2018-11-29 03:16

    I thought this novel was going to delve deeper into how the characters crossed the border. I guess I had expectations that weren't met. The writing style had me confused a lot. I had a difficult time with the switching of characters and the switching of time periods. I had to go back often to figure out what was actually happening. Maybe this was partly because I read this book over a month, while doing a million other things! ha! I also felt the story was drawn out and I was wondering if I would ever finish the novel. It did pick up the last 100 pages and I felt a stronger connection to the characters and their struggles.

  • Sandra Velazquez
    2018-11-20 04:21

    At first I was afraid to read this book, I was worried it would be to close to The Distance Between us by Reyna as well that I did not want to ruin my image of a perfectly written book by Reyna Grande. But this book is as equally amazing, it brings out so many feelings, it tells such a vivid story of two girls who become 1. Juana comes such a long way in her journey of abandonment by her parents, and achieves so much despite the paths she has chosen.

  • JoVanna
    2018-12-18 11:21

    After reading Grande's memoir, I quickly purchased the rest of the books that she has written. Grande gives a voice to many Mexicans who immigrated to the United States and sheds light on the barriers that they face. This particular story was raw and honest. I would definitely recommend it!

  • Eric Hopkins
    2018-12-11 10:03

    The running joke for this one in my class was to just keep increasing the number of mountains in the title. The consensus in that class was this book was unreadably dry. By the last few chapters the book was being referred to as "Across a Hundred-Million Mountains".

  • Bryce
    2018-12-07 05:08

    Superb read!

  • Nancy
    2018-12-17 08:20

    I enjoyed this book. I couldn’t put it down and read it so fast that I got confused in the story.

  • Alissa
    2018-11-30 09:58

    I bought this book three years ago, I don’t remember doing it. I started this book at some point, I don’t remember doing it. I read it tonight, in a few hours, I don’t know why it took me so long

  • Kim Spradlin
    2018-12-01 02:56

    I finished this beautiful and heartbreaking book in one day because I just couldn't put it down. I loved it! It's definitely going to stay with me for awhile.

  • Jenny Shank
    2018-11-29 03:56

    Reyna Grande’s Across A Hundred Mountains offers a human story behind the thousands of immigrants who cross illegally from Mexico to the United States each year. Although the book is fiction, the author’s personal experience informs her tale. According to the biography on her website, Grande, who now lives in California, “entered the U.S. as an illegal immigrant in 1985″ to join her parents when she was ten years old. Earlier this year, the book won the annual El Premio Aztlan Literary Award, started by New Mexico writer Rudolfo Anaya to honor Chicano literature.Across A Hundred Mountains begins with a scene of devastating loss in a Mexican village. Nine-year-old Juana, her baby sister, and mother Lupe are stuck in their flooding shack, waiting for Juana’s father Miguel to return from his work as a campesino. Lupe goes to search for him, leaving Juana standing on the kitchen table holding her sister. Juana falls asleep while she waits for her parents to return, and the baby dies in the floodwater. The death of the baby sets off a chain of events that destroys the García family. When Miguel can’t pay the debt for the baby’s funeral, he decides to head to the United States to find work, leaving Lupe vulnerable to the rapacious town mortuary director, Don Elías.The story of Juana is intercut with scenes from the perspective of Adelina, a Mexican American woman who works as a social worker in L.A. and travels to Tijuana to find out the truth about her father’s disappearance nineteen years earlier. In the first chapter, an old coyote leads her to her father’s remains, lying where he fell after a snake bit him during his attempt to cross into the U.S. After Lupe is reduced to a raving alcoholic due to grief caused by the deaths of three of her children, Juana embarks on a journey in the opposite direction to find her father in the U.S.Grande’s prose is spare and simple, and its clarity is often beautiful, such as in this description of Juana’s neighborhood in which she remembers walking with her father, whom she calls Apá:“They ran down the street, Apá pulling her behind him like a kite. She knew they were almost home when the cobbled stones were replaced with dirt and pebbles. And the rows of pink, blue, yellow, purple, and green concrete houses became shacks growing out of the earth. Little shacks made out of bamboo sticks and cardboard, some leaning against one another like little old ladies tired after a long walk.”Plot and structure rather than nuanced characterization are the primary strengths of Across A Hundred Mountains. Although Juana, Adelina, and Lupe are given complexity, the supporting characters tend to be wholly good or evil, such as the leering, corpulent Don Elías who ultimately makes Lupe pay her debt by having sex with him, and Don Elías’ silent, childless wife who “just sat there, knitting baby clothes she donated to the church.” But villains like these help to propel the plot, providing as many dramatic twists and turns as can be found in a telenovela, making the book go down easily in one sitting.What is more striking than the influence of villains on the lives of the García family is the harsh consequences of their poverty and the indifference most of the people they encounter have toward their plight. It’s expensive to be poor, their indebtedness compounding every woe, ultimately forcing Juana to become a prostitute for a while in Tijuana until she can raise enough money to hire a coyote to lead her across the border. She and others in her position are treated as something less than human, the money-minded coyote ready to abandon them in the desert if the immigration authorities turn up or if they move too slowly. The simple description of Juana’s desert crossing attempt is riveting, and the perils make it evident that only a person who is so desperate to reach the U.S. that she would be willing to give up her life to do so ever embarks on such a journey.With “Across A Hundred Mountains” Reyna Grande has humanized the lightning-rod topic of illegal immigration by telling the story of one embattled family.Published in New West, August 2007.

  • Natalie Sanchez
    2018-11-29 07:19

    Review of "Across a Hundred Mountains" by Natalie SanchezEver since Juana fell asleep that one rainy night, she would live to regret it for the rest of her nights to come. Why did she have to fall asleep? Her mother left her in charge of her baby sister, Anita, just a couple of months old, while she went on the look out for her father. The house was flooding and she needed to make sure that he was safe and on his way home from the fields. She specifically told Juana to stay alert and to keep her sister safe. Sleep got the best of Juana and caused her to release her hold on her sister. Her sister drowned that night in her flooded shack. She woke up to her mother’s desperate scream, “Where’s Anita, Juana? Answer me!”Because of this small mistake, Juana’s father was forced to go to el otro lado in search of work so that he could supply his family with money to pay off Anita’s burial cost and to buy a better home back in Mexico. Meanwhile, Juana’s mother is being manipulated bye Don Elías, the most powerful man in town. There was no way for Juana or her mother to fight back, for they had yet to pay him the money from Anita’s funeral, that of which Don Elías had completely funded. They held on to the hope that Juana’s father would come back from el otro lado with the money to pay off said funeral costs and maybe even to buy a new; a more sturdy home. But their hopes failed, as Juana’s father did not return. Desperate to get Don Elías off of her back, Juana’s mother paid him back the only way she could; she paid him back with her body. She later became pregnant with a son of his, whom was taken away from her by Don Elías and his wife. After this happened, Juana’s mother became the “town tramp”, making it difficult for her to get a job of any kind or to have any one’s back during this whole predicament. It was then that Juana had to go out and find a job to support herself and her mother in their time of need and ostracism. For the rest of her life, Juana is forced to live with this memory, forcing her to repay what she had caused her mother to lose. Across a Hundred Mountains by Reyna Grande tells the story of Juana’s journey to U.S. in search for her father. During her journey, she undergoes a twist, as she meets Adelina, another Mexican young women with a dark past, in jail. Two similar lives become one in this captivating story of a young Mexican women trying to rid herself of the demons in her life. Grande tells Juana’s story in this novel in a very interesting way. She starts out with a portion of Adelina’s life, and then switches to Juana’s life, and so on. The twist begins when Adelina and Juana meet for the first time in jail. This is the first time in the book where we are able to hear about the two protagonists interacting with each other. We later learn that the girl, whom we have known to be Adelina, was in fact Juana. Adelina was killed by her boyfriend when she attempted to escape to the U.S. with Juana, leaving Juana, who took Adelina’s legal papers as her own, in order to get into the United States. On Grande’s part, his was a very interesting way to convey her message and at the same time, grab the reader’s attention. This is a great book for any teen or adult who is not afraid of hearing about the real life of a Mexican immigrant. I especially recommend this book to Teens or Adults of the Mexican or Latino race. This book will resonate to them because of either the experiences that they or their families have had to face on their way to the United States in hopes of a better life. This book does contain cursing and some explicit parts in it, but all in all, it is a very personal and intimate book about life en el otro lado.

  • Wendy Kendall
    2018-12-17 09:05

    Illegal immigration from Mexico to the U.S. is most often a political or economic discussion. This novel puts a human face on the families involved in the 1980s. This is the story of one family, their tragedies, and the impacts of their extreme poverty in Guerrero, Mexico. The father labors in the fields for pesos. He hears tales from others about big wages in America. He decides to illegally cross to “El Otro Lado”, The Other Side. There he thinks he can make enough money to save what is left of his family. His plan is to work there to make the money they need, and then return to Mexico, at last able to provide for his family.The story is told from the point of view of the young daughter, Juana. She says a poignant good bye to her loving father. He tells her he’ll be on the other side of the mountains she sees in the distance. “When you feel that you need to talk to your Apa, just look toward the mountains and the wind will carry your words to me.” She finds out much later that El Otro Lado is not just over the mountain, but over a hundred mountains and more.Tragedies continue to heap on the poor, little remaining family. They bear up alone for years with no word from the dedicated husband and father, and no return. Juana decides to go to find her father. On her own illegal journey across the border, it’s her destiny to meet Adelina Vasquez who has her own sad story. The meeting is fateful for the both of them, and they join forces to help each other in their personal quests to reunite with their families.You’ll admire the dignity and grace the characters depict in their often desperate circumstances. You’ll wonder at the mystery of a man who disappears into the distance, seemingly without a trace. You’ll ponder the added dimensions that drive the illegal border crossing issues, and the complex impacts that ripple out into unintended consequences.If you want to delve deeper, I also recommend as a companion book “The Distance Between Us” by Reyna Grande. The author is very credible on this topic, as this memoir about her own family reveals. Her parents illegally cross to Los Angeles to make money, leaving behind the author and her older sister and brother with their grandparents. There are many parallels between this memoir and the story, but also some pointed differences. The memoir also includes some photos that give vivid emphasis to the sadness of the children in these circumstances.And thereby hangs a tale . . . .

  • Juanita
    2018-11-28 10:02

    Review: Across a Hundred Mountains by Reyna Grande. This is a well written, descriptive stunning story about migration, loss, and discovery. Many people in our world don 19t understand the reasons behind illegal immigration but this book gives great insight into what pushes people to risk their lives and leave their families trying to make it across the border. Immigration is an extreme issue here in the United States so this book gives us a chance to walk in those people 19s shoes striving to restore their former lives and put together a broken family. Some might feel that the book is confusing at the beginning with the switching perspectives of tackling the immigration issues however, the author also establishes a great fiction storyline that keeps the reader interested and at the end it all comes together and makes a lot of sense.The story is about Juana and her family 19s physical and economical challenges they were going through. Juana was introduced as young girl who also had psychological issues starting from the time her sister died and her father leaving the family for the United States. Then it goes on to where she feels her whole world was falling apart because she had been held responsible for what they were going through so she decides to go looking for her father after a vast amount of time had passed with no word from him. It was also Juana 19s last glimmer of hope to restore her mother 19s love and affection. Juana goes through extreme measures to try and restore her family which makes the story more captivating and emotional.It 19s a good fast pace book which address a worthy subject of the desperation of illegal immigrants and their families they leave behind 26..

  • Daniel
    2018-12-08 10:05

    Across A Hundred Mountains by: Reyna Grande. Born September 7, 1975 in Iguala, Mexico, Graduated from the University of California, Santa Cruz, is best known for her 2007 novel Across A Hundred Mountains. Adelinas father got a job a el otro lado working in Los Angeles, He told his family he would be writing to them while he’s in California, As the week went by they still got n letter only the house owner coming to the house asking for the money for the house payment. Juana would tell the retail agent that her husband would be coming back soon and that he would be able to make the payment, but the retail agent would believe her and would let it slide but he would tell her that he would be coming back the following week.The point of the book is about a girl whose father gets a job at el otro lado and Adelina goes across the border looking for her father making sure he was okay and wanting to know why he hasn’t come home or wrote letters like he said he would.I felt as if the book is talking about real life things like what’s going on with people in Mexico they get jobs in America and have to move from there families and their family try to cross to see their loved ones. I like the book it’s very interesting how things happen to this girl and how she makes choices that she can really regret one day.I would recommend the book to a person who really enjoys reading and does it not just for fun but more as in an interest, that the book has its up’s and downs through the beginning and middle. You will enjoy the book.

  • Laura
    2018-11-19 08:07

    I really wanted to like this book more than I did. It got great reviews from several publications that I respect, and I was hoping that it would really put a face on the personal experience of migration from Mexico to the United States. I suppose it did, but the main thing holding it back was the not so great quality of the writing. I feel horrible saying that, seeing as I have not myself written a book or published a book. Also, in the picture on the back of the book, Reyna Grande (the author) looks really sweet. I would like to sit down and have a long cup of tea with her.All personal attractions aside, though, the writing just didn't hold up to the subject matter.... which was definitely pretty intense seeing as rape, extortion, prostitution, domestic violence, and death upon death upon death all play major roles in the story. I felt like all of these topics were handled too lightly or too simply. I also felt like the characters were just not developed enough. Also, there is a gimmick to this book that annoyed me once the gimmick became clear around page 200. Until that point, I was quite confused and couldn't put the pieces together quite right. I wondered if maybe I missed something? Or maybe I am in the wrong profession as an English teacher if I can't seem to understand what's going on in this book whose intended audience is half the age of me?

  • Stephanie
    2018-11-28 08:16

    Across a Hundred Mountains by Reyna Grande told the story of two girls, one American and one Mexican who meet up in a prison in Tijuana. Juana's father has traveled to America in an attempt to make money for his family to get them out of the small shanty that they live in. Having not had any word from him in years, the people around them say horrible things about how he must have found a white woman and forgotten all about them. Juana doesn't believe a word they say and sets off to find him.Adelina is now in her 30s and has returned to Mexico to find her own father, leaving behind the man she loves to do so. She has no idea if her father is dead or alive but needs to find out before she reunites with her mother whom she hasn't seen in years.This was a very poignant novel which switched points of view between young Juana and Adelina. Although the meeting of the two doesn't actually occur until almost the end of the novel, they are both tied together by the journeys they take. Grande captured so much feeling with her words and had me crying and feeling the pain of Juana and Adelina.I was enraptured by this novel and couldn't stop until I found out what became of both Juana and Adelina. I got to experience Mexico and the hardships which some people there face. It was eye opening. This was a wonderful story which encompassed all emotions and touched me deeply.

  • Freddie
    2018-11-18 09:05

    The book gives a human face to the illegal immigration issue being discussed so widely in popular media these days. Grande has drilled home the point that people are not crossing the border in a 'greedy' desire for the American dream - the way media puts it. There is also more than just abject poverty that drives them away from their humble abodes in different parts of Mexico. There is corruption for one at all levels. They lack infrastructure. The people risk their lives to migrate to the US not to earn dollares and get filthy rich but to make things better at home! All these and more are part of what Grande relates in this book.Just a note on Grande's writing. She does an amazing job with Across a hundred mountains. She essentially tells the story of a girl moving back and forth between the past and present. the two converge quite brilliantly midway through the book to give a sense of revelation to the reader about the secret that the girl has hidden since she crossed the border.As other reviews might have noted, this book is a flowing read and it is difficult to put it down. I finished it in one sitting - 4 hrs.