Cover image for The everything I have lost
Title:
The everything I have lost
ISBN:
9781947627178

9781947627185
Edition:
1st ed.
Physical Description:
253 pages ; 23 cm.
Summary:
Julia's best friend is her diary. She calls it "My Everything" -- twelve-years-old at its beginning and fifteen at the end; a girl at the beginning, a young woman at its end, knowing more than she ever wanted to know. Julia tells her diary everything about growing up in Juárez. At first, her family loses their house and their car, then suddenly her father is making lots of money. The family has a new car and a new house. It doesn't make sense. Her father's gone a lot, and her mother is always distracted and worried, busy creating art and wondering where her husband is. Life in Julia's urban neighborhood is strange too: there are shootings in the middle of the street, cars and neighbors disappear, pet cats and entire homes are left behind. Girls are disappearing somewhere in the city. She hears people saying that drug cartels rule the streets, but who are they? She only knows that she and her brother can't play outside. And she is becoming a young woman in the midst of this confusion and uncertainty. She wants to move across the river to the United States where her aunt and cousins live. Julia writes about all this and about things she overhears, things she doesn't quite understand, and things she simply tries not to think about. Then her father vanishes for real and Julia and her brother go to live with her aunt in El Paso. What's happened to Dad? Will he come back? Nobody wants to answer. And Julia can only make lists of those things she loses. --
Holds:

Available:*

Library
Material Type
Call Number
Item Available
Copies
Status
Searching...
Book TEEN FICTION AGU 1 1
Searching...
Searching...
Book TEEN FICTION AGU 0 1
Searching...
Searching...
Book TEEN FICTION AGU 0 1
Searching...

On Order

Summary

Summary

12-year-old Julia keeps a diary about her life growing up in Juarez, Mexico. Life in Juarez is strange. People say it's the murder capital of the world. Dad's gone a lot. They can't play outside because it isn't safe. Drug cartels rule the streets. Cars and people disappear, leaving behind pet cats. Then Dad disappears and Julia and her brother go live with her aunt in El Paso. What's happened to her Dad? Julia wonders. Is he going to disappear forever? A coming-of-age story set in today's Juarez.

Sylvia Zéleny is a bilingual author from Sonora, México. Sylvia has published several short-story collections and novels in Spanish. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Texas at El Paso where she is currently the Director of the Online Creative Writing MFA program. In 2016 she created CasaOctavia, a residence for women and LGBTQ writers from Latin America.


Author Notes

Sylvia Z�leny is a bilingual author from Sonora, M�xico. Sylvia has published several short-story collections and novels in Spanish. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Texas at El Paso where she is currently the Director of the Online MFA program. In 2016 she created CasaOctavia, a residence for women and LGBTQ writers from Latin America.


Reviews 4

School Library Journal Review

Gr 8 Up--In this realistic fiction title, Julia records her thoughts, emotions, and experiences in diaries over the course of four years (ages 12--15). Readers experience the teen's rage, sorrow, insecurity, and questions: Why does her family move so often? How can her father suddenly earn so much money? Why must he make such frequent, lengthy work trips? Who is murdering so many women and girls in Juárez? Why does her mother refuse to answer questions, instead retreating into her world of painting? When Julia's father vanishes and she is sent with her younger brother Willy to live with their tía in El Paso, the anger long bubbling inside begins to seep out. This new time of transition and loss is scary and painful, but hope comes as she starts to heal and learns to live and thrive in the borders of her world. Julia's entries are often poetic and at times humorous but always honest and even raw. Themes of borders as fluid places of exchange, division, loss, and growth are presented literally, as in the bridge dividing El Paso, TX, and Juárez, Mexico, and figuratively, like the blurry line between her great-grandmother's lucid wisdom and childlike memory loss, or Julia's own youthful innocence and a growing awareness of painful adult realities. VERDICT This high-interest, authentic coming-of-age novel adds an important perspective to young adult collections.--Ruth Quiroa, National Louis University, Lisle, IL


Publisher's Weekly Review

In this sensitively told novel, Julia--soulful and yearning, yet also angry and sometimes hard-talking--feels trapped between her parents. She has grown up in Juárez, Mexico, just across the border from El Paso and known for its violence, its drug cartels, and for the girls and women who disappear there. In compelling diary reflections that follow her from ages 12 to 15, Julia's narration swings between universal teen preoccupations--worries about clothes, her first day at school, a new house, boys--and extreme fears of being shot on the street and wondering if her father works for the narcos (one her mother shares and which causes tension between Julia's parents). Eventually, the environment becomes so dangerous that Mamá sends Julia and her little brother to live with family members in El Paso. In an author's note, Zéleny, oft-published in her native language of Spanish, explains that she first wrote this U.S. middle grade debut in Spanish, then rewrote it in English. Conveying the grim challenges Julia faces, Zéleny creates a fierce, funny, and full-of-feeling protagonist whose staccato diary entries pull the reader along. Ages 10--14. (Sept.)


Kirkus Review

In short vignettes, Julia details her rocky adolescence as she and her family migrate across the Jurez-El Paso border.Poetic diary entries chronicle her transformation from sheltered preteen to cynical teen. The unevenly paced narrative takes place against the backdrop of family drama, missing girls, and her father's criminal dealings. The work is peppered with secondary characters who are not as fleshed out as Julia but who anchor the young woman as she slowly realizes the source of her father's recent windfall. The protagonists who live in the U.S.Bis, the strong-willed great-grandmother who is possibly dealing with dementia; Ta, the religious aunt who takes the siblings in when tragedy strikes and their neglectful artist mother stays behind in Jurez; and Jons, an older, Americanized cousinrepresent stability and freedom for Julia. In El Paso, they don't have to worry about shootings, ransoms, and narcos. However, Texas carries its own troubles, including learning English, making new friends, and La Migra. Odd jumps in time and rushed plot twists confuse, and the main character's overly nave voice in the first half will turn off older teens, but her sexual curiosity and expletive-filled second half might overwhelm more sensitive readers. Rudimentary line drawings in the early entries distract rather than add nuance to the tale.A contemporary border story that hovers between too earnest and too nostalgic, never quite capturing an authentic teen voice. (Fiction. 13-16) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Booklist Review

Julia's everything is her diary, in which she records everything, especially her losses. She has just moved to Juárez, and her father has gotten a job that brings in plenty of money, but in return, he is away much of the time, and her mother, an artist, seems frightened of something. Julia isn't allowed to go anywhere alone, and she chafes at the restrictions on her freedom. Her frustrations make up much of the diary, where she complains about how her mother only cares about her art and Julia's little brother, Willy, but she also expresses her thoughts about life and growing up from nearly 13 to 15 years old. Now living with her aunt and cousin in El Paso, Julia finds that new experiences and friends have shown her that her everything could be positive. Zéleny's lively novel, written in the form of a diary, captures Julia's voice perfectly as she matures. Julia's life is very different from that of many readers, but Zéleny's approachable, inviting writing makes it resonant on a broad scale.--Donna Scanlon Copyright 2019 Booklist