Belletrista Blog

Next stop on the cruise is Dominica (and New York) courtesy of Julia Alvarez.

Her book, How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents, is the story of four sisters who have to flee Dominica for the US because of their father’s political activities. Told in reverse chronological order, we see how these women, and their parents, have struggled to find their place across two very different cultures. The Garcias are a close family and the relationships are well-written, but Alvarez also shows the sibling rivalry and neuroses that often exist beneath the surface of family life.

I understand that this book appears on high school/university reading lists and I can understand why – it’s a very readable and engaging story which tackles an interesting subject in a straightforward way. There’s plenty of material there for essay titles. I don’t mean that as an insult; I’m just trying to say that Alvarez tackles her subject in an accessible way.

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