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The Gringo Champion

Author: Aura Xilonen

Language: English

Summary: The award-winning debut novel by young Mexican author Aura Xilonen, The Gringo Champion is a thrillingly inventive story about crossing borders that the Los Angeles Review of Books called “one of the must-read books of 2017.”

Liborio has to leave Mexico, a land that has taught him little more than a keen instinct for survival. He crosses the Rio Bravo, like so many others, to reach “the promised land.” And in a barrio like any other, in some gringo city, this illegal immigrant tells his story.

As Liborio narrates his memories we discover a childhood scarred by malnutrition and abandonment, adolescence lived with a sense of having nothing to lose. In his new home, he finds a job at a bookstore. He falls in love with a woman so intensely that his fantasies of her verge on obsession. And, finally, he finds himself on a path that just might save him: he becomes a boxer.

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Outcasts United: an American town, a refugee team, and one woman’s quest to make a difference

Author: Warren St. John

Language: English

Summary: The extraordinary tale of a refugee youth soccer team and the transformation of a small American town.

Clarkston, Georgia, was a typical Southern town until it was designated a refugee settlement centre in the 1990s, becoming the first American home for scores of families in flight from the world’s war zones—from Liberia and Sudan to Iraq and Afghanistan. Suddenly Clarkston’s streets were filled with women wearing the hijab, the smells of cumin and curry, and kids of all colours playing soccer in any open space they could find. The town also became home to Luma Mufleh, an American-educated Jordanian woman who founded a youth soccer team to unify Clarkston’s refugee children and keep them off the streets. These kids named themselves the Fugees.

Set against the backdrop of an American town that without its consent had become a vast social experiment, Outcasts United follows a pivotal season in the life of the Fugees and their charismatic coach. Warren St. John documents the lives of a diverse group of young people as they miraculously coalesce into a band of brothers, while also drawing a fascinating portrait of a fading American town struggling to accommodate its new arrivals. At the centre of the story is fiery Coach Luma, who relentlessly drives her players to success on the soccer field while holding together their lives—and the lives of their families—in the face of a series of daunting challenges.

This fast-paced chronicle of a single season is a complex and inspiring tale of a small town becoming a global community—and an account of the ingenious and complicated ways we create a home in a changing world.

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Finding the Game: Three Years, Twenty-five Countries, and the Search for Pickup Soccer

Author: Gwendolyn Oxenham

Language: English

Summary: Across two dozen countries—from back alleys to remote beaches to the roofs of skyscrapers—an eye-opening journey into the heart of soccer Every country has a different term for it: In the United States it’s “pickup.”  In Trinidad it’s “taking a sweat.” In Brazil it’s “pelada” (literally “naked”).  It’s the other side of soccer, those spontaneous matches played away from the bright lights and manicured fields—the game for anyone, anywhere.

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Il té letterario di Expatclic del 25 settembre 2020

Oggi abbiamo parlato di letteratura afroamericana. E’ stato interessantissimo.   Da dove cominciare? La discussione è stata coinvolgente, e i consigli sono arrivati abbondantissimi! Partiamo con Toni Morrison, indiscussa voce della letteratura afroamericana e vincitrice del Premio Nobel per la letteratura. In molte stanno leggendo il suo Amatissima, considerato all’unanimità il suo capolavoro – ne parleremo meglio quando  la lettura sarà conclusa. Insieme a Toni, … Continue reading Il té letterario di Expatclic del 25 settembre 2020

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Seedfolks

Author:  Paul Fleischman, Judy Pedersen (Illustrations)

Language: English

Summary: A Vietnamese girl plants six lima beans in a Cleveland vacant lot. Looking down on the immigrant-filled neighborhood, a Romanian woman watches suspiciously. A school janitor gets involved, then a Guatemalan family. Then muscle-bound Curtis, trying to win back Lateesha. Pregnant Maricela. Amir from India. A sense of community sprouts and spreads.
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I am not your perfect Mexican daughter

Author: Erika L. Sánchez

Language: English

Summary: Perfect Mexican daughters do not go away to college. And they do not move out of their parents’ house after high school graduation. Perfect Mexican daughters never abandon their family.

But Julia is not your perfect Mexican daughter. That was Olga’s role.
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