Reading Together 2012 Blog

Urrea’s Newest Book

I just finished reading Queen of America, Urrea’s new book and the sequel to The Hummingbird’s Daughter which Eleanore wrote about last week.

I didn’t read them in order. Actually I’m still on the waiting list for Hummingbird’s Daughter, but I certainly understood and appreciated Queen of America. It didn’t feel as if I was starting in the middle of a story.

Queen of America continues the story of Teresita Urrea, the “Saint of Cabora” when she is forced to flee with her father from Mexico to Arizona. Even there she is claimed as the spiritual leader of the Mexican Revolution and pilgrims and assassins follow her to America. She then leaves the southwest for a journey across the country: New York, San Francisco, St Louis, among other cities. Along the way, she must decide if a saint can fall in love.

I knew these two books were based on Urrea’s family history, his great aunt, I believe, but I didn’t know the details. After reading it, I went to his website to understand the family history that is the basis for the story. In retrospect, I wish I had understood just how much of this account was true before reading the book.

I’ve now read several of Urrea’s books. They are different from each other in many ways, but all are well-written and compelling. I’m looking forward to his visit in March.


Queen of America