Julia Alvarez's picture

Julia Alvarez

USA flag (b.1950)

Julia Alvarez was born in the Dominican Republic and migrated with her family to the United States in 1960. Her acclaimed first novel, How the García Girls Lost Their Accents, received the PEN/Oakland Josephine Miles Award, was listed by Americas magazine as 1993's No. 1 bestseller in Latin America, and was named by both the ALA and The New York Times Book Review as a Notable Book of 1991. Her second novel, In the Time of the Butterflies, was nominated for the 1995 National Book Critics Circle Award. She lives in Middlebury, Vermont.

Genres: Children's Fiction, Literary Fiction
Julia Alvarez recommends
The House on Mango Street (1991)
Sandra Cisneros
"It's not always that a luscious writer can be a luscious reader of her own work. This must be the voice she hears in her head when she writes her magical prose."
Toward the Splendid City (1994)
Marjorie Agosín
"Marjorie Agosín proves the power of the world so transport us to the center of her humane and human vision."
The Meaning of Consuelo (2003)
Judith Ortiz Cofer
"A bittersweet tale of the price one pays to reinvent the story handed down by one's antepasados and familia. Consuelo is both herself and every mujer, and her story her own and that of her island, torn between self-discovery and safety."
The Saint of Lost Things (2005)
Christopher Castellani
"Christopher Castellani's characters are so real they seem to leave the fog of their breath on the page!"
The Lesser Tragedy of Death (2010)
Cristina García
"[A] brave and moving tribute to a brother gone astray; with skill, unflinching honesty, and redemptive compassion, Cristina García tracks his marvelous, complex, and errant life. . . . These poems are the beautiful, painful, astonishing result of a journey to hell and back in search of the brother she loves. With this first book of poems, García, one of our best novelists and storytellers, proves herself to be a talented poet as well."
Summer Hours At the Robbers Library (2018)
Sue Halpern
"This novel presents a full cast of intriguing, complex characters and a heart-warming message about how our losses are often what allow us to connect with each other."
Fruit of the Drunken Tree (2018)
Ingrid Rojas Contreras
"A coming of age story, an immigrant story, a thrilling mystery novel, thoroughly lived and felt--this is an exciting debut novel that showcases a writer already in full command of her powers. Make room on your shelves for a writer whose impressive debut promises many more."
Tigers, Not Daughters (2020)
Samantha Mabry
"Move over, Louisa May Alcott! Samantha Mabry has written her very own magical Little Women for our times. This is no family of tamed girls but a clan of fierce and fighting young women who will draw readers into their spell. A celebration of the bonds of sisterhood and of the ways we heal by reaching beyond our losses, our brokenness and fears to the love that holds and heals."
The Patron Saint of Pregnant Girls (2020)
Ursula Hegi
"By the author of the beloved Stones from the River, Hegi’s new novel is sure to be her next beloved book….A writer at the height of her powers. I can’t think of a better way to ‘endorse’ a novel than to say I will be gifting it to my book-loving friends and family - a gift, mind you, not a loan, as I want to keep this title in my keeper bookshelf along with several others of my favorite of Hegi’s novels. As in a circus after a particularly riveting performance, The Patron Saint of Pregnant Girls deserves a thunderous round of applause."
The Rock Eaters (2021)
Brenda Peynado
"What a smart and intriguing writer I've just 'discovered'--though from the impressive list of credits on the title page, I can see that others have been luckier, sooner. Brenda Peynado's The Rock Eaters is adazzle with alluring stories, flights of fancy that don't just dissolve into cleverness or parse the world neatly into cliche or categories. The stories help us think through situations all around us in "the real world" in new, captivating ways. What I most admire is the moral imagination of these stories, never nudging, never obvious, but subtle and unsettling. Peynado is a writer willing to cross literary borders: magical realism, fable, parable, fiction, nonfiction--she erases those limiting storytelling parameters and her stories soar."

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