Skip to:Content
|
Bottom
Cover image for Into the beautiful North : a novel
Title:
Into the beautiful North : a novel
ISBN:
9780316025270

9780316025263
Edition:
1st ed.
Publication Information:
New York : Little, Brown and Company, 2009.

2010.
Physical Description:
342 p. ; 24 cm.
General Note:
Includes reading group guide
Contents:
"Nineteen-year-old Nayeli works at a taco shop in her Mexican village and dreams about her father, who journeyed to the US when she was young. Recently, it has dawned on her that he isn't the only man who has left town. In fact, there are almost no men in the village--they've all gone north. While watching The Magnificent Seven, Nayeli decides to go north herself and recruit seven men--her own "Siete Magníficos"--to repopulate her hometown and protect it from the bandidos who plan on taking it over."--Provided by publisher.
Holds:

Available:*

Library
Material Type
Call Number
Item Available
Copies
Status
Searching...
Book FICTION URR 1 1
Searching...
Searching...
Book FICTION URR 1 2
Searching...
Searching...
Book FICTION URR 1 2
Searching...
Searching...
Book FICTION URR 1 1
Searching...
Searching...
Book FICTION URR 1 3
Searching...
Searching...
Book FICTION URR 1 1
Searching...
Searching...
Book FICTION URR 1 1
Searching...

On Order

Summary

Summary

Nineteen-year-old Nayeli works at a taco shop in her Mexican village and dreams about her father, who journeyed to the US to find work. Recently, it has dawned on her that he isn't the only man who has left town. In fact, there are almost no men in the village -- they've all gone north. While watching The Magnificent Seven , Nayeli decides to go north herself and recruit seven men -- her own "Siete Magnv?ficos" -- to repopulate her hometown and protect it from the bandidos who plan on taking it over.

Filled with unforgettable characters and prose as radiant as the Sinaloan sun, Into the Beautiful North is the story of an irresistible young woman's quest to find herself on both sides of the fence.


Author Notes

A finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for his landmark work of nonficiton The Devil's Highway , Luis Alberto Urrea is also the bestselling author of the novels The Hummingbird's Daughter , Into the Beautiful North , and Queen of America , as well as the story collection The Water Museum , a PEN/Faulkner Award finalist.

He has won the Lannan Literary Award, an Edgar Award, and a 2017 American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature, among many other honors. Born in Tijuana to a Mexican father and American mother, he lives outside of Chicago and teaches at the University of Illinois-Chicago.


Reviews 4

Publisher's Weekly Review

Nayeli, the Taqueria worker of Urrea's fine new novel (after The Hummingbird's Daughter), is a young woman in the poor but tight-knit coastal Mexican town of Tres Camarones who spends her days serving tacos and helping her feisty aunt Irma get elected as the town's first female mayor. Abandoned by her father who headed north for work years before, Nayeli is hit with the realization that her hometown is all but abandoned by men, leaving it at the mercy of drug gangsters. So Nayeli hatches an elaborate scheme inspired by The Magnificent Seven: with three friends, she heads north to find seven Mexican men and smuggle them back into Mexico to protect the town. What she discovers along the way, of course, surprises her. Urrea's poetic sensibility and journalistic eye for detail in painting the Mexican landscape and sociological complexities create vivid, memorable scenes. Though the Spanglish can be tough for the uninitiated to detangle, the colorful characters, strong narrative and humor carry this surprisingly uplifting and very human story. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Kirkus Review

Three Mexican seoritas cross the border with a gay escort in this good-humored road novel from Urrea (The Hummingbird's Daughter, 2005, etc.). The coastal town of Tres Camarones has gone from sleepy to desolate since its men went north to "Los Yunaites," looking for work. Luckily there are two strong women in town. Middle-aged Irma, a no-nonsense former bowling champion, is running for mayor. Her niece Nayeli, a dark-skinned beauty one year out of high school, is her campaign manager. Nayeli misses her father, one of the migrants, and treasures his one postcard, from Kankakee, Ill. After Irma is elected, Nayeli turns her attention to the crime wave she sees comingthough all we've been shown are two out-of-luck drug dealers. Inspired by a screening of The Magnificent Seven at the Cine Pedro Infante, she decides to head north and bring back Mexican cops or soldiers to help her deal with the bandidos. Joining Nayeli in her quest are Yolo and Vampi, her "homegirls," and Tacho, gay owner of La Mano Ca"da Taquer"a and Internet caf. The premise is weak, and Urrea keeps everything cartoon simple so he can get his show on the road. The town takes up a collection and gives the girls a big send-off. In Tijuana, Nayeli fights off some bad guys before being befriended by Atmiko, ersatz warrior and authentic trash-picker, who insists on joining their mission. Using tunnels, they cross the border successfully on their second attempt. (This is well-covered ground for Urrea: See his nonfiction border trilogy, beginning with Across the Wire, 1992.) In a silly bit of farce, Tacho is arrested as a suspected al-Qaeda member. Meanwhile, the ladies spend time in San Diego. Their recruiting goes well. Yolo and Vampi find boyfriends. Nayeli, still single, goes back on the road with the liberated Tacho. They are heading for Illinois, her father's putative home, but the momentum has been lost and the ending is a fizzle. Minor work from a writer who has done much better. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Booklist Review

*Starred Review* If you are a judo-practicing, butt-kicking 19-year-old Mexican woman in a town with only one youngish man and he's gay you might decide to go to El Norte to recruit illegal immigrant men to revive your village. And Naveli, a twenty-first-century female Don Quixote with a three-person posse that includes her gay boss, does exactly that. This wonderfully funny, occasionally sad novel combines elements of the picaresque with the joie de vivre and startling coincidences of a road-trip movie. Urrea's knowledge of immigrant life, the rigors of poverty, and how being poor affects everyday existence provides the gritty details that make characters and places come alive. Sardonic humor, rugged details of the working-class poor, and the exotic, often bizarre characters all contribute to an outstanding reading treat. Fans of Urrea's nonfiction and his Kiriyama Prize winner, The Hummingbird's Daughter (2005), will probably not expect this lush, rollicking novel of quests, self-discovery, and romance. But once committed to the trip readers will have no trouble staying till the bittersweet and triumphant end.--Loughran, Ellen Copyright 2009 Booklist


Library Journal Review

"Perhaps it is time for a new kind of femininity," declares Nayeli, the 19-year-old heroine of this engaging postglobalization immigration story from the author of The Hummingbird's Daughter. Nayeli's small village in the Sinaloa region of Mexico has been drained of its adult males, including her father, by the promise of El Norte, and taken over by some shadowy gangsters. Inspired by a screening of The Magnificent Seven at the local cinema, Nayeli decides to journey north herself, not to seek her fortune in "Los Yunaites" but to bring back some of the men who have abandoned their families and their country, thereby saving her beloved town. It would be hard to go wrong with such a premise, and Urrea rises to the occasion with a surprising, inventive, and very funny novel populated by an array of quirky characters. His fast-paced, accessible style has the crossover appeal of a John Steinbeck or Cormac McCarthy, while the politically charged undercurrent of the novel pulses with a compassionate vision of the future. Highly recommended.-Forest Turner, Suffolk Cty. House of Correction Lib., Boston (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Go to:Top of Page