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How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents…

How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents (Plume Contemporary Fiction) (original 1991; edition 1992)

by Julia Alvarez

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2,687573,215 (3.5)83
Title:How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents (Plume Contemporary Fiction)
Authors:Julia Alvarez
Info:Plume (1992), Paperback, 290 pages
Collections:Your library

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How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents by Julia Alvarez (1991)


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Showing 1-5 of 57 (next | show all)
A fantastic novel. Definitely read this one.
told much like diary entries, the story is centered on a family of six: mother, father, and four daughters. Each chapter told from a different sister's point of view and place in time, it nonetheless feels like a cohesive whole and is very nicely balanced between the shades of memory and what actually happened (neither of which is particularly well-defined, but that's ok). ( )
  m_mozeleski | May 13, 2018 |
A common theme among many of the books I've read lately is how evil and ugliness emerge out of people and situations that are not in themselves evil. In this book, as well, there is a thread of ugliness born out of ignorance, power, and fear. Men throw their wight around with their sweethearts and their wives and daughters because they can, because they are expected to act macho, and because they feel powerless and need to convince themselves they have power over someone. Older relatives afraid of new technologies and mostly uneducated respond with knee-jerk reactions out of fear when the young women in this book seek to explore and learn for themselves about the world around them, and old superstitions crop up unexpectedly, at times causing results that may make 'enlightened' readers wince. This book captures a raw, often uncomfortable world that is probably quite recognizable to many readers, one that is especially familiar in spirit, if not in its details, for many female readers.

This book starts out in the present with a birthday party for the aging father of 4 women, and then peels back the layers of time to show how these women got to where they are now. Through this lense the author presents images of life as new immigrants to the US, and images of life in the Dominican Republic during portions of its turbulent history. ( )
  JBarringer | Dec 30, 2017 |
Great writing and I learned a bit about Dominican history. It is as advertised, a series of interconnected stories in the voices of 4 sisters. I had hoped the interconnected stories would be part of a bigger story arc, but there just wasn't enough plot for my taste. ( )
  Janellreads | Oct 18, 2017 |
The way they're written, the scenes are rich with detail and subtle emotion, but somehow they don't come together into a satisfying whole. I'm not sure what it is because I like the reverse chronology and I like the scenes, as I've mentioned. Maybe it's that the characters overall don't seem three-dimensional. Yoyo's is the clearest voice, and I didn't actually find her sections particularly interesting. I wanted more of the sisters or of Mami or Papi. As it is, the novel is pretty good, but it didn't really snag me and draw me in. I finished it, but it left me unsatisfied.

As a side note, the Kindle edition was poorly edited, and that was somewhat distracting. ( )
  ImperfectCJ | Oct 11, 2017 |
Hispanic, Latino, fiction, Dominican Republic, immigrants, sisters, to-read, novel, immigration, family, Latin America, New York
  CUGantt | Feb 27, 2017 |
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» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Julia Alvarezprimary authorall editionscalculated
Vaccariello, SteveCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The old aunts lounge in the white wicker armchairs, flipping open their fans, snapping them shut.
Träge sitzen die alten Tanten in den weissen Korbsesseln, lassen ihre Fächer aufspringen und mit einem Knall wieder zusammenklappen.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0452268060, Paperback)

Eagerly embracing their new American culture in Miami, the four Garcia women iron their hair, smoke cigarettes, date American men, forget their Spanish, and lose their accents all in their journey toward adulthood. Reprint. 25,000 first printing.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:24:00 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

In the 1960s, political tension forces the Garcia family away from Santo Domingo and towards the Bronx. The sisters all hit their strides in America, adapting and thriving despite cultural differences, language barriers, and prejudice. But Mami and Papi are more traditional, and they have far more difficulty adjusting to their new country. Making matters worse, the girls--frequently embarrassed by their parents--find ways to rebel against them.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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