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Almost a Woman by Esmeralda Santiago
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PART TWO OF ESMERALDA'S BIOGRAPHY! THE BEST ONE YET! THIS ONE DETAILS HER ARRIVAL TO NEW YORK CITY AS A YOUNG GIRL AND THE CLASH OF CULTURES SHE EXPERIENCED ONCE THERE. THE LANGUAGE BARRIERS AND THE STRUGGLES SHE FACED AS A "FOREIGNER" IN THE BIG APPLE. ALTHOUGH, PUERTO RICANS ARE BY BIRTHRIGHT AMERICAN CITIZENS SINCE PUERTO RICO IS A US TERRITORY WITH US CITIZENRY. IT BRINGS BACK MEMORIES OF MY OWN TIME GROWING UP IN BROOKLYN! LOVE IT! HAVE READ IT THREE TIMES ALREADY.
  mluyando | Nov 14, 2009 |
The book Almost a Woman by Esmeralda Santiago, takes place in New York as the main character, Negi, grows up. The character is very believable and reading from her point of view lets the reader in all her thoughts and into the story. You feel as if you are growing up along with her.
Negi moves to New York from Puerto Rico and deals with poverty, lack of privacy, racism, and feeling homesick.
She lives with seven younger siblings and a strict mother in a 3 room apartent. As she gets older she becomes an aspiring actor, a dancer, and dates many guys. She becomes independant after being in the shadow of her mother all her life and gets involved in American ways. The ending of the story leaves you hanging, by never telling the decision Negi makes, but its an intersting book. The thing I liked about this book was the topic. However I disliked that it had some Parental Advisory scenes. It was a great book but, I wish it hadnt ended so soon. ( )
  cwright | Oct 9, 2007 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 037570521X, Paperback)

"Not only for readers who share [Santiago's] experiences but for North Americans who seek to understand what it means to be the other."--The Boston Globe

In her new memoir, the acclaimed author of When I Was Puerto Rican continues the riveting chronicle of her emergence from the barrios of Brooklyn to the theaters of Manhattan.

"Negi," as Santiago's family affectionately calls her, leaves rural Macún in 1961 to live in a three-room tenement apartment with seven young siblings, an inquisitive grandmother, and a strict mother who won't allow her to date. At thirteen, Negi yearns for her own bed, privacy, and a life with her father, who remains in Puerto Rico. Translating for Mami at the welfare office in the morning, starring as Cleopatra at New York's prestigious Performing Arts High School in the afternoons, and dancing salsa all night, she yearns to find balance between being American and being Puerto Rican. When Negi defies her mother by going on a series of hilarious dates, she finds that independence brings its own set of challenges.

At once a universally poignant coming-of-age tale and a brave and heartfelt immigrant's story, Almost a Woman is Santiago's triumphant journey into womanhood.  

"A universal tale familiar to thousands of immigrants to this country, but made special by Santiago's simplicity and honesty."
--The Miami Herald

"A courageous memoir. . . . One witnesses. . .the blessings, contradictions and restraints of Puerto Rican culture."
--The Washington Post Book World

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:42:59 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

"Negi," as the author's family affectionately calls her, leaves rural Macun in 1961 to live in a three-bedroom tenement apartment with seven siblings, an inquisitive grandmother, & a strict mother who won't allow her to date. At thirteen, Negi yearns for her own bed, privacy, & her father, who remains in Puerto Rico. Translating for Mami at the welfare office in the morning, starring as Cleopatra at New York's Performing Arts High School in the afternoon, & dancing salsa all night, she also seeks to find balance between being American & Puerto Rican. When Negi defies her mother by going on a series of dates, she finds the independence brings challenges. At one a universally poignant coming-of-age tale & a heartfelt immigrant's story, this book is the author's journey into womanhood.… (more)

» see all 4 descriptions

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