Guadalupe Anaya, a waitress, is pregnant. She is also the newly elected block captain of Sunflower Street, in charge of raising awareness of safety in her southeast Albuquerque neighborhood. Her campaign platform: God helps those who help themselves. While she waits for the baby, Lupe writes letters to her unborn child, whom she names Destiny. It is Lupe's dream that her daughter will be a writer, pushing a pen instead of a broom. In this highly imaginative work of fiction by the acclaimed author of Mother Tongue, Demetria Martínez weaves a portrait of six unforgettable characters, whose lives intertwine through their activism as they seek to create a better world and find meaning in their own lives. At the center of this circle of friends is Lupe, and her heartfelt letters to Destiny punctuate the narrative. Until she crossed the border alone and without papers, Lupe worked in a maquiladora in Mexico. Rescued by strangers, she has made a family for herself among the kindhearted friends, swept up in various causes, who will be her daughter's godparents. Deftly alternating between first-person and second-person narratives, conscious states and dream states, The Block Captain's Daughter is full of delightful surprises, even as it deals with universal themes of desire and risk, death and birth, and the powerful ties that bind us all together.
Demetria Martínez is an author, activist, lecturer, and columnist. Her autobiographical essays, Confessions of a Berlitz-Tape Chicana (Univ. of Oklahoma Press), won the 2006 International Latino Book Award in the category of best biography.
Born in Albuquerque, NM, in 1960, where she now resides, Martínez earned her BA from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. She teaches at the annual June writing workshop at the William Joiner Center for the Study of War and Social Consequences at the Univ. of Massachusetts, Boston. Martínez writes a column for the independent progressive bi-weekly The National Catholic Reporter. She is involved with Enlace Comunitario, an immigrants' rights group that works with Spanish-speaking survivors of domestic violence.
"A long-awaited work of fiction for the many readers who love Mother Tongue."--Michelle Otero, author of Malinche's Daughter