Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Death of Josseline: Immigration Stories from the Arizona Borderlands” as Want to Read:
The Death of Josseline: Immigration Stories from the Arizona Borderlands
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Death of Josseline: Immigration Stories from the Arizona Borderlands

3.93  ·  Rating Details ·  344 Ratings  ·  64 Reviews
Dispatches from Arizona—the front line of a massive human migration—including the voices of migrants, Border Patrol, ranchers, activists, and others
For the last decade, Margaret Regan has reported on the escalating chaos along the Arizona-Mexico border, ground zero for immigration since 2000. Undocumented migrants cross into Arizona in overwhelming numbers, a state whose
Paperback, 256 pages
Published October 12th 2010 by Beacon Press (first published 2010)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Death of Josseline, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Death of Josseline

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jennifer Kim
Jun 16, 2014 Jennifer Kim rated it liked it
This is a book about immigration, and I’d like to start by telling you a little bit of my immigration story. As long as I could remember, we were coming to America. I can’t remember a time when we weren’t planning to come to America.

My mother had two brothers. The younger brother had the luck to be scouted by an American company in the late 60’s and came to America. The younger brother started the paperwork for the visa for my mother and her older brother. Ten years later, the visa finally cam
Feb 19, 2010 Mark rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“She was a little girl with a big name, Josseline Jamileth Hernandez Quinteros.” Thanks to Margaret Regan no one who reads ‘The Death of Josseline’ will ever forget her.

Regan takes the tragic death of this fourteen year old undocumented migrant and weaves it though a series of chapters that deal with a variety of immigration border issues in Arizona. With the astute view point of a journalist, Regan takes several of her previously reported stories in the Tucson Weekly, and fleshes them out with
Aug 17, 2011 Leslie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Regan's book is a timely examination of the perils of US immigration policy. Opening with the tragic story of the death of fourteen-year-old Josseline, who falls sick while trying to cross the desert and is left to die, alone and afraid, Regan pulls no punches as she recounts the stories of several people injured or killed while trying to get to America. While some may feel The Death of Josseline skews to the left, it is a fair and balanced look at the US-Mexico border and the dangers of crossin ...more
Dec 23, 2011 Carl rated it liked it
The perspective in this book is interesting and the stories of the immigrants are compelling, but the bias in favor of the immigrants seems too great. We have to look very realistically at the illegals for what they are "Illegal Immigrants" and deal with that.
Jan 06, 2017 Kelly rated it really liked it
Let me preface my review by saying that I loved The Devil's Highway, and it made me evaluate assumptions that I didn't even realize I had about immigration. Regan makes a reference to that book in this story. And what a story this is. Beginning with 14 year old Josseline's ill fated attempt to cross the border, Regan regales us with other tales of failed and successful border passings. She interviewed vigilantes, border patrol agents, Native American tribe members, migrants, and human rights gro ...more
Mar 19, 2017 Audrey rated it really liked it
A sobering look at immigration issues along the Arizona/Mexico border.
Vicky Pinpin-Feinstein
May 07, 2013 Vicky Pinpin-Feinstein rated it liked it
Shelves: owned
Margaret Regan is a Tucson, Arizona-based writer and perhaps because she lives there, writing a book about immigration, or in this case, illegal immigration south of the border, is a natural choice. It is a subject that she has written about regularly in her career. She begins the book with a prologue--depicting the death of fourteen year old Josseline in prime Sonoran desert--a creative decision for shaping the arc of her stories. Her recounting this particular story is an effective device, ent ...more
Mark Stevens
May 22, 2011 Mark Stevens rated it it was amazing
Margaret Regan’s “The Death of Josseline” is a fine piece of reporting about a humanitarian crisis in the nation’s backyard. It would make a fine bookend to Ted Conover’s brilliant “Coyotes,” first published in 1987. Like Conover, Regan puts faces and names to the ongoing dramas inside the border-crossing zone, primarily the Arizona border around Tucson. It’s clear where Regan’s sympathies lie, with the “wretched of the earth” being “criminalized for their poverty.” But she takes an unflinching ...more
Dan Anderson
Jul 07, 2013 Dan Anderson rated it it was amazing
The author has done some serious homework in putting this book together. She has spoken with migrants (many) on both sides of the border, as well as interviewing smugglers, Border Patrol agents, ranchers, border residents, and just about everyone else involved in or affected by the current immigration mess on the southern U.S. border. She visits the scenes familiar to the migrants, on both sides of the border. The reader moves with the author through the rocky canyons and the ubiquitous cactus a ...more
Stephanie Wright
May 21, 2012 Stephanie Wright rated it it was amazing
For most of us, we talk about immigration when we discuss our genealogical roots. We all came from somewhere - France, Ireland, England, Mexico, Honduras, etc. For many of us that trek was made by our ancestors as long ago as 400 years. For others, it was made in the last 10 years. The majority of us can boast about the new life that our ancestors carved out for us by immigrating to America. For others it is a story of hardship, prejudice, and even death. Margaret Regan, a noted journalist who s ...more
Emily Just
Mar 25, 2014 Emily Just rated it really liked it
A great read that puts a human face, names, and stories of desperation and dreams to just "numbers" or "statistics". Its easy to lump Mexican and Central American immigrants into stereotypes not knowing or wanting to know the why behind their sacrifices and dangerous risks for so many who simply just want to feed their families. Its easy to also point fingers to the problems of overcrowded schools, hospitals, resources and increased taxes from the immigrants without remembering that we are all d ...more
Karna Converse
Mar 05, 2012 Karna Converse rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: my-favorites
A great book for a book club discussion.

Margaret Regan puts a human face on the information she collected during a decade of reporting for the Tucson Weekly. She introduces readers to Mexicans and Central Americans who were sent back to Mexico after being arrested for entering Arizona illegally and others who have moved to a border city to find work so they can support their families. She hikes with volunteers who leave food and water on desert trails for migrants to find and use GPS to map the
Kaye McSpadden
Jan 30, 2011 Kaye McSpadden rated it liked it
I read this book for a book discussion group. It puts a human face on the many aspects of the so-called "illegal immigration" situation in the southwest. It tells the true stories of some of the thousands of undocumented workers who have risked (and in too many cases, lost) their lives trying to cross the Arizona desert and enter the U.S. in hopes of finding a job so they can feed their families. Their stories, as well as the stories of the many humanitarians trying to help them, the rescuers, a ...more
May 30, 2013 Kendra rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: I wouldn't
Recommended to Kendra by: UU Bookgroup
I read this a couple of years ago for a UU Bookgroup. Since it has been so long since I read it, I don't really remember the details, but I can't make myself go back and re-read it. What I do remember is that it was one of the more biased, hyperbolic pieces of propaganda I've read in a long time. The author is clearly biased; the emigrants are saints while the US gov't and those enforcing the laws are evil. The author also really indulges in hyperbole. At one point she seems to be comparing the ...more
Aug 11, 2013 Jess rated it it was amazing
"The Death of Josseline" is a must read for every person who wishes to understand the complicated issue of immigration. Josseline was a teenage girl who died out in the desert while trying to cross the border and reach her mother in Los Angeles. Josseline's story is just one of the many, and although the focus of the stories is on the Arizona Borderlands, the stories represent problems facing the U.S. and other countries. Author Margaret Regan does an excellent job at presenting all viewpoints — ...more
Aug 30, 2015 Melissa rated it really liked it
The very title of this work of journalism reminds us that each migrant crossing a border is a human being, who has been brought into the world and given a name. Regan does a thorough job of presenting a decade of deaths and border crossings specifically in Arizona, woven together with developments in immigration politics and policies state and nation-wide. She interviews those who cross, those who live along the border on both sides, and those who are there to enforce the increasingly visible li ...more
Thing Two
I generally live by the theory that most errors can be blamed not on a conspiracy, but on just plain incompetency. This book, I believe, was written to prove me wrong.

How Congress can continue to fund the construction of a wall dividing the border between the United States and it's friendly neighbor to the south - a wall which does not prevent the migration of people, but does prevent the migration of animals - for an annual outlay of $775 million dollars annually, is just unconscionable.

The De
Christine Jones
Nov 18, 2016 Christine Jones rated it liked it
In picking up The Death of Josseline, it was clear to me that the author has a point of view that she prefers and throughout the presentation of information it is maintained. The author presents her information clearly, with a good deal of research that she has done. With touching clarity, she provides insight into the human drama that continues to plague the south western states. There are points where the writing gets repetitive, and the statistics are not well threaded in the narratives and a ...more
Anastasia Zamkinos
Dec 19, 2011 Anastasia Zamkinos rated it it was amazing
Margaret Regan does it right in The Death of Josseline. She explores many different but interconnected aspects (humanitarian, political, economic, environmental, legal, medical...) of the crisis on the US/Mexico border. Regan accomplishes this while maintaining journalistic and social integrity and fulfilling a commitment to fairly represent the individual realities and perspectives of several undocumented immigrants and documented US citizens.

This kind of measured, well-informed, and at times h
Evanston Public  Library
This horrific documentation of immigration stories from the Arizona-Mexico Borderlands includes the tragic attempted crossing by fourteen-year-old Josseline Jamileth Hernández Quinteros. At five feet tall and a hundred pounds she was in charge of bringing her ten-year-old brother to their mother in Los Angeles, but she fell ill and ordered her brother to go on without her. By the weekend, the brother makes it to L.A. A few weeks later, a dead body in the desert is found and identified as Josseli ...more
Sep 29, 2010 Sarah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I just finished reading this book after coming back from the borderlands volunteering with the group No More Deaths. Reading the stories of real people whose lives are impacted by the border really brings home the insanity of u.s. border policies and the tragedies that occur because of them. From little girls dying in the desert to mothers whose young children forget who they are while they're locked up in a detention center, to families ripped apart and people reluctantly ripped from their home ...more
Jun 19, 2010 Susie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think everyone in America, and especially those creating policy, should read this book in order to have a better understanding of what American "immigration" policy is causing. Living in a border state, I realize there are many opinions about the migrants/illegals/undocumented and I think, as humans, we all have to remember that they are humans too. I doubt there is a person in America who, if starving, wouldn't do everything in their power to make their situation better if they could, That is ...more
Apr 25, 2012 April rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: social-justice
This book is a pretty good primer for border issues. I had already read the Devil's Highway which is also a good primer but they were different as well. This book is not about the Death of Josseline (as opposed to Devil's Highway which was about a specific event). Instead, the beginning is a basic primer and then we have some things that you might not get from other books... a visit to a couple who live along the fence, a visit to a reservation along the border, a visit to Cafe Justo in Mexico.. ...more
Apr 25, 2012 John rated it it was amazing
Margaret Regan is a reporter on a Tucson paper and has been covering the border for many years. She tells the tale of immigration through the eyes of migrants, people trying to reduce the death toll, Border Patrol officers and landholders close to the line. The influx of crossers from southern Mexico and Central America is tied to NAFTA, which allowed cheap corn from the US to devastate an economy based on small farms raising corn and coffee. Homeland Security's fence and suspension of normal en ...more
Jun 06, 2011 Johnna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is hard to put down because it explains from more than one point of view what we've done and not done about the illegal immigrant situation on the southern border between the U.S. and Mexico. It is heart-rendering to read the stories of the real people affected by this travesty. Families torn apart and loved ones left to die in the desert. A must-read by anyone that gives a damn. Political? Yes. Apathy? No. Choose to believe that human rights matter more than "borders" and maybe then s ...more
This is a must read if you have any interest or investment in the current situation along the border, the Arizona desert, or current political issues such as SB 1070. Regan has done a good job of keeping the stories human, but still maintaining a fairly unbiased presentation of what truly happens for immigrants trying to make it through the Sonoran desert and rugged terrains. I hope that this book has been made available in regions other than Arizona, so that thos wanting to learn more at this t ...more
Experiences of undocumented immigrants, U.S. citizens who try to help them, and law enforcement agents. Undocumented immigration is clearly a complicated issue, but seems to be dealt with in the least humane and most impractical way possible. Many sad stories, very few happy outcomes. A somber book, except for this excerpt from an interview with a volunteer humanitarian... highly relatable for me.

Many of his fellow activists were "faith-based," but McCullough was not a churchgoing man. "I was ra
Feb 02, 2012 Jessica rated it it was amazing
Everyone must read this book. Unless you live in the Sonora desert and see it happening, it's hard to get a concrete sense of what happens there when people try to cross the Mexico/US border. No matter your political ideology, you'll appreciate Margaret Regan's portraits of the many individuals who are involved: Border Patrol officers, local law enforcement, ranchers, humanitarians, Mexicans who stay behind, and Mexicans who make it across the border, and those who perish or are arrested in the ...more
Dec 08, 2012 Timber rated it really liked it
Shelves: didn-t-finish
I only made it halfway through this book--but that is because I've gotten too busy and caught in other books to finish. I enjoyed what I read so far and when I get more free time I hope to finish! What draws me into this book is the dichotomy of the plight of illegal migrant workers and the laws of the United States. From what I read so far, this book does a very good job explaining both sides of immigration reform, although obviously showing more compassion toward Mexicans than toward US laws ( ...more
Dec 24, 2013 Lora rated it really liked it
A fascinating must read for anyone to be able to speak even a little coherently about illegal immigration issues. Personal stories, the wall, politics, poverty, solutions, health care issues and tragic and unnecessary deaths by the hundreds. Some great stories about those trying to make a difference. Fascinating. Many times said, "No way!" out loud. Not the best-written book, but the information was separated out into nice chunks so you could move on. A must read for anyone affected by or intere ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Across the Wire: Life and Hard Times on the Mexican Border
  • It's Easier To Reach Heaven Than The End Of The Street: A Jerusalem Memoir
  • Rediscovering Values: On Wall Street, Main Street, and Your Street: A Moral Compass for the New Economy
  • Illegal People: How Globalization Creates Migration and Criminalizes Immigrants
  • Just Like Us: The True Story of Four Mexican Girls Coming of Age in America
  • Decade of Betrayal: Mexican Repatriation in the 1930s
  • Is Multiculturalism Bad for Women?
  • A Life Like Mine: How Children Live Around the World
  • On the Origin of Tepees: The Evolution of Ideas (and Ourselves)
  • The Politics of Truth
  • Listen to Me Good: The Story of an Alabama Midwife (Women & Health C&S Perspective)
  • Jump at the Sun
  • They Take Our Jobs!: And 20 Other Myths about Immigration
  • Voices from the Storm: The People of New Orleans on Hurricane Katrina and Its Aftermath
  • Laugh Your Way to Grace: Reclaiming the Spiritual Power of Humor
  • The HarperCollins Study Bible: Fully Revised & Updated
  • Beaded Hope
  • What the World Eats

Share This Book