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La Casa en Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros
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La Casa en Mango Street (original 1984; edition 1994)

by Sandra Cisneros, Elena Poniatowska (Translator)

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6,117155670 (3.63)148
Member:Jane_Fung
Title:La Casa en Mango Street
Authors:Sandra Cisneros
Other authors:Elena Poniatowska (Translator)
Info:Vintage (1994), Edition: Anv, Paperback, 112 pages
Collections:Your library, Read but unowned
Rating:****
Tags:Essay

Work details

The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros (1984)

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» See also 148 mentions

English (151)  Spanish (1)  All languages (152)
Showing 1-5 of 151 (next | show all)
Through a series of short stories, the author captures life in a poorer section of Chicago, IL. The emotions and actions of a pre-teen - early teen aged girl are written so remarkably well that I hated to see the book end.

This is good writing! The life of the character Esperanza Cordero was not always easy, but even the small, every day occurrences are rendered important in the telling. Some stories are sad, others are humorous -- all are crafted excellently.
  Whisper1 | Jun 29, 2016 |
This was done in a series of vignettes. It was okay. Well written, but I think I expected it to be something more. Not a bad collection of stories, but i don't know if I'll ever read it again. ( )
  PriPri77 | Jun 23, 2016 |
Mother/daughter book club selection ( )
  euroclewis | Jun 8, 2016 |
Read years ago when I was in college getting my BS in Elementary Education. What an eye-opener for this middle-America middle-class young white woman! Lovely & intense as I recall.

Reread Jan. 2013. Not sure which edition to choose, as mine was not the 25h anniversary edition which logo shows on all these. Only mentioning that because there may be additional content (in the anniversary edition) that I did not see.

It is as magical as I remembered. So refreshing to read prose that reads like poetry, as lately it's been a fashion to write YA in verse form, even when the author isn't a poet. That is to say, breaking prose into lines of similar length so it looks like a poem doesn't do it. Cisneros knows this, and just writes with metaphor and melody and authenticity, so the book is poetic without being overtly so.

I like that these vignettes reveal lots of different characters and kinds of events - it's not just about one girl, but about the whole community and even, it could be argued, a large part of the Hispanic immigrant experience. I do see a resemblance to my current immigrant neighbors here in CC NV - especially, unfortunately, the sexism, the precocious girls replacing the trap of their fathers' houses for the trap of their husbands'. But it's not actually a sad book, because we know that the strongest children will find a way up and out:

Four skinny trees with skinny necks and pointy elbows like mine. Four who do not belong here but are here.... Their strength is secret. They send ferocious roots beneath the ground. They grow up and they grow down and grab the earth between their hairy toes and bite the sky with violent teeth and never quit their anger."

"A House of My Own. Not a flat. Not an apartment in back. Not a man's house. Not a daddy's.... Only a house quiet as snow, a space for myself to go, clean as paper before the poem."

I think it's much like [a:Julia Alvarez|7277|Julia Alvarez|http://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1220651344p2/7277.jpg]'s [b:The Woman I Kept to Myself|83972|The Woman I Kept to Myself|Julia Alvarez|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1171047987s/83972.jpg|81069]

Btw. the rape scene only mentions forcible kissing. If a reader is sophisticated enough to realize that it's actual rape that is being referred to, that reader can handle it." ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
This is a very "Mexican" book. It's the story of Esperanze who lives in a poor section of Chicago and struggles to stay in school.

My sister-in-law introduced me to Cisneros' works, and I immediately fell in love with the author. There is something about her writing that just speaks to my soul. I recommended her works to two book clubs who found them to have "too much Spanish," but when I recently suggested Cisneros to a book group that focuses on Latino/a authors, she found an appreciative audience.

I particularly liked her description of a child saying that when you turn 11, people forget that you are also 10 and 9 and 8 and 7 and 6 and 5 and 4 and 3 and 2 and 1 inside. (I'm paraphrasing here.) Heck, I'm way older than that, but I still occasionally recognize the 5-year-old in me.

I've read this book (and the companion Woman Hollering Creek) at least 3 times. ( )
  BookConcierge | May 27, 2016 |
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Epigraph
Dedication
A las Mujeres
(To the Women)
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We didn't alway live on Mango Street.
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References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (3)

Book description
[R.L. 4.5]
Told in a series of vibrant vignettes, this is the story of Esperanza Cordera, a girl growing up in the Hispanic quarter of Chicago, in a neighborhood that is neither pretty nor easy. Sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes joyous, this is a moving story of a young girl attempting to rise above the hopelessness around her.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0679734775, Paperback)

Acclaimed by critics, beloved by readers of all ages, taught everywhere from inner-city grade schools to universities across the country, and translated all over the world, The House on Mango Street is the remarkable story of Esperanza Cordero.

Told in a series of vignettes – sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes deeply joyous – it is the story of a young Latina girl growing up in Chicago, inventing for herself who and what she will become. Few other books in our time have touched so many readers.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:25:08 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

For Esperanza, a young girl growing up in the Hispanic quarter of Chicago, life is an endless landscape of concrete and run-down tenements, and she tries to rise above the hopelessness.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 6 descriptions

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