A Glass of Water
Jimmy Santiago Baca (Author)
DescriptionA Glass of Water is a gripping tale of family, loyalty, ambition, and revenge that offers an intimate look into the tragedies unfurling at our country's borders. The first novel from award-winning memoirist, poet, and activist, Jimmy Santiago Baca, it is a passionate and galvanizing addition to Chicano literature. The promise of a new beginning brings Casimiro and Nopal together when they are young immigrants, having made the nearly deadly journey across the border from Mexico. They settle into a life of long days in the chili fields, and in a few years their happy union yields two sons, Lorenzo and Vito. But when Nopal is brutally murdered, the boys are left to navigate life in this brave but capricious new world without her. A Glass of Water is a searing, heartfelt tribute to brotherhood, and an arresting portrait of the twisted paths people take to claim their piece of the ever-elusive American dream.
September 14, 2010
5.4 X 0.6 X 8.1 inches | 0.44 pounds
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About the Author
Jimmy Santiago Baca was born in Santa Fe, New Mexico, in 1952. His parents abandoned him at the age of two, and he lived with his grandmother for several years before being placed in an orphanage. A runaway at age thirteen, Baca was sentenced to five years in a maximum security prison at the age of twenty-one for drug offenses. It was in prison that he learned to read and write and began to compose poetry. His book Martín & Meditations on the South Valley, a pair of long narrative poems, won an American Book Award in 1988. In addition to his poetry collections and stories, Baca wrote the screenplay for the movie Bound by Honor, which was released by Hollywood Pictures in 1993.
"A well-written and at times lyrical saga told with understanding and compassion."--Library Journal "Jimmy Santiago Baca's poems read like novels, and his novels read like poems. . . . Baca fills his prose with evocative, naturalistic details, [and] his poetry's beating heart . . . weaves stories of Chicano loss and redemption, often through a reconnection to Earth's natural elements. . . . Baca's tangible earthiness seeps through [A Glass of Water] . . . but his bucolic prose is anything but lulling; as the story builds to a violent resolution, so do the political undercurrents. But ultimately, it's transcendent performance--Carmen's song and Vito's populist pugilism, not to mention Baca's own transformation through literature--that offers salvation."--The Austin Chronicle "[With A Glass of Water] Baca manages to put a face on desperation. He decries the exploitation of migrant farm workers in the United States . . . [and] derogates not only an exploitive American economic system, but also Mexican drug lords driving the poor off their land, who become homeless or victims of violence. . . . [But] a field worker's life isn't all toil and gloom as reflected in the lives of the characters. There's also passion, joy, love of family, adventure, love, longing, and accomplishment. The imagery is striking, the prose lyrical."--The Albuquerque Journal "[A] blistering novel . . . The sheer passion that drives Baca's [work] is undeniable."--Publishers Weekly "[With] image-rich writing . . . A Glass of Water adds another strong voice to the growing body of literature on immigrants and migrant farm workers. . . . Baca should be commended for tackling injustice in his fiction."--High Country News "Impressive . . . Fierce and uncompromising, but also beautiful and wise, A Glass of Water might be [Baca's] most accessible work yet. . . . Baca's concerns are universal: family, loyalty, the dignity of hard work, and, above all, love."--Pasatiempo