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383 pages, Hardcover
First published June 13, 2017
A school had always been a place to incubate hopes and dreams, in a village like Tío’s or in the biggest of cities. But for many of the children here, parental hopes had turned to adult expectations, and the warmth of the incubator felt more like the focused burn of a magnifying glass in the sun. He had first noticed it in the ball games—baseball and what they called soccer here. Mothers and fathers screamed at their players, not in appreciation but in command, even condemnation. Did no one still believe that childhood was a time for joy?
It fascinates me to think how we all happen to be here, to think of the tales behind each one of us, the ways our stories not only brought us here, but how they will change how we go forward, together and apart.
These were children who had long outgrown childish naiveté: raised with televised violence, playing games of graphic death, taught by their parents to mistrust any political, economic, or even religious authority. Eleven-year-old girls with braces on their teeth and sparkly unicorns on their notebooks breathed out the cynicism of a Nihilist. And yet, even the oldest, most sneering of these adolescents harbored secret pockets of hope, a hidden belief that the world might still hold out an outstretched hand in place of a fist.
Guadalupe was a tapestry built from jagged and mismatched pieces that, with care, could find a fit. Unlikely shapes, from a myriad of sources, joined by skilled hands and the eye of a believer. The broken, the lost, and the hidden from view, made into something new.