How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents

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Score: 3.5 0 5
485 Ratings

How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents Book Summary

“Simply wonderful.” —Los Angeles Times
Acclaimed writer Julia Alvarez’s brilliant and buoyant and beloved first novel gives voice to four sisters recounting their adventures growing up in two cultures. Selected as a Notable Book by both the New York Times and the American Library Association, it won the PEN Oakland/Josephine Miles Award for books with a multicultural perspective and was chosen by New York librarians as one of twenty-one classics for the twenty-first century. Ms. Alvarez was recently honored with the 2013 National Medal of Arts for her extraordinary storytelling. 

In this debut novel, the García sisters—Carla, Sandra, Yolanda, and Sofía—and their family must flee their home in the Dominican Republic after their father’s role in an attempt to overthrow a tyrannical dictator is discovered. They arrive in New York City in 1960 to a life far removed from their existence in the Caribbean. In the wild and wondrous and not always welcoming U.S.A., their parents try to hold on to their old ways, but the girls try find new lives: by forgetting their Spanish, by straightening their hair and wearing fringed bell bottoms. For them, it is at once liberating and excruciating to be caught between the old world and the new. How the García Girls Lost Their Accents sets the sisters free to tell their most intimate stories about how they came to be at home—and not at home—in America.
“A joy to read.” —The Cleveland Plain Dealer

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How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents - Julia Alvarez Reviews

  • How the Garcia Girls Got Their Accents Back

    By NY woman in DC
    A beautiful story written with passion, love of family and the importance of living one's dreams while feeling like a fish out of water! Bravo Julia Alvarez! A fine author, a deeply spiritual and approachable author with whom I had the pleasure to chat across the United daily non stop to Burlington VT some years back! A vivid portrayal of immigrant life and cultural mores of strangers in a new land! Julia, when we met en route from DC to VT your kindness touched me!💜Janice Lipani, aspiring memoirist and author in training!
  • Beautifully written

    By ohblindingstars
    I couldn't put this book down. It's something I think everyone should read to understand one of millions of immigrant stories. The characters are well written and the stories nostalgic. I highly recommend this book!
  • Boom! Bam! Meow!

    By Essential for Book Lover
    This felt more like a collection of short stories than a novel. Part I, the Garcia sisters as adults, was somewhat confusing. Part III, the Garcia sisters as young girls, was the most entertaining section. My favorite stories included: the girls receiving the dancing dolls after seeing the dancing girls at the Spanish restaurant, the Christmas surprise, and the ghost cat. I really enjoyed the author's note at the end of the book. I think the novel would have worked better for me if it had been a memoir written like Ms. Alvarez's note. But the story was an expansive glimpse of an immigrant's experience.
  • Almost a 5....

    By JenDavenport
    I loved the parts about the DR. I would give 5 stars but, I found the backwards time frame difficult in maintaining my attention.
  • Well...

    By Lsmdtb5
    Not really sure how I feel about this book. I know it went backwards in time, that didn't bother me as much as it did other reviewers. The ending is what bothered me! It just sort of stopped. No real ending or beginning if you want to think of it that way. Very weird way to finish a book.
  • How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accent

    By Accentuate This!
    Here is a book that eloquently provides insight for the dynamics of second language acquisition, while providing entertaining, heartfelt, identifiable situations that resonate a capacity for honest storytelling. It has placed an accent on my approach to teaching a second language.
  • This is the crap NPR recommends

    NPR promoted this book as something all good liberals must read. And here it is on iBooks...FREE...and with less than stellar reviews.
  • How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents

    By Spooky manor
    This seems a collection of well-written short stories rather than a novel. I found the lack of time sequence confusing.
  • A Classic

    By Jendabom
    Great piece of Latin-American literature. I read it once in college and I just finished reading it again for the second time. It's an easy read with a story line that I feel all immigrants (or children of immigrants) can easily relate to.
  • Very boring

    By 080701yolo
    It is a okay but very boring and hard to understand for me!!

Julia Alvarez - How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents E-Book

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