CGLC Reads discussion

Immigrant Stories

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message 1: by Vivian (new)

Vivian | 19 comments Mod
This month we celebrate the transformative power of migrant literature. Who are your favorite immigrant authors? What are your favorite books about the migrant, asylum seeker, or refugee experience?

message 2: by Autumn (new)

Autumn | 3 comments Mod
Recently finished up Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity. Interesting perspective of the 'migrant' story since it centers around a Muslim family from rural north India who migrate to a Hindu community in Mumbai. I think we tend to think of the immigrant experience as largely a westward movement- Europe or the United States. Yet, this family experiences many of the hardships and discrimination. The book is narrative non-fiction which adds another layer of uniqueness to the read.

Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity

message 3: by Vivian (last edited Aug 17, 2018 12:27PM) (new)

Vivian | 19 comments Mod
The Leavers by Lisa Ko
The Leavers tells the story of an immigrant family from China. Deming's mother flees from her home when she finds out she is pregnant with him but does not want to be with the father of her child. She arrives in New York with a hopeful heart, but her life does not turn out the way she plans. Eventually Deming ends up in foster care, and is raised by a family whose culture is very different from his. This story is fiction but it is based on the true stories of many people who want a better life, but don't always get the opportunity they dream of in the land of the "free."

message 4: by Lisa (new)

Lisa | 5 comments Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford
Henry Lee, a Chinese-American boy is friends with a Japanese-American girl ( Keiko) during World War II in Seattle. They maintain their friendship through letters sent to one another although they are separated by Executive Order 9066. Keiko and her family are sent to an internment camp, and Henry Lee returns to China for his formal education. It's a love story that reveals the hardships of the Japanese-American people during the WWII.

message 5: by Kristi (new)

Kristi Smith | 12 comments Mod
"The Gravedigger's Daughter," by Joyce Carol Oates

The beginnings of World War II (WWII) were an uncertain time for Jewish people. Were the rumors true? Surely one man could not be that evil. Families began fleeing their homelands in search of safety. A fictionalized account of one Jewish family seeking refuge is told in the pages of this book.

The Schwart family (Was that even their last name? Did Ellis Island officials misspell it?) emigrated to America from Germany in the dawn of WWII. They settled in western New York, with the father, once a high school teacher in Germany, begrudgingly accepting the only job offered to him: a gravedigger. With this job came the undesirable benefit of the gravedigger's cottage; undesirable because the cottage was cold and stark, yet was expected to be used as a home for the gravedigger's family. Taunted by locals for being Jewish, the mother was soon consumed by depression and the father acted out with aggression and hostility. Their three children grew to fear their despotic father, be wary of anyone outside of their family unit, and eventually seek a life outside of their desolate home.

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