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Crossing Paperback – October 1, 1998


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 119 pages
  • Publisher: Bilingual Review Pr (October 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0927534800
  • ISBN-13: 978-0927534802
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 5.5 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,563,780 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Inspired by the story of 13 undocumented immigrants who were left to suffocate in a boxcar outside El Paso, Mart!nez's occasionally stilted but harrowing debut tells the story of 16-year-old Luis, who leaves his impoverished native village in Mexico for the U. S. and finds himself caught by a "coyote," or immigrant-smuggler, in a deadly swindle. By the end of his journey north, locked with 12 other men in a train car, Luis will have witnessed several crossings: from one country to another, from one life to another, from child to adult, from home to hell, from life to death. As the car gathers allegorical significance and the men face death by thirst, Mart!nez shows us the paths that have led them to their little hell on wheels. Unfortunately, the novel's language feels as sapped of energy as the trapped men, and the story rolls on about as slowly as the train. Yet the simplicity of the premise and of Mart!nez's prose allows moments of poignancy and captures the characters' deadly struggle, with thirst and one another, to survive.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

More About the Author

I'm a prof at Ohio State and have been writing for over a decade. My new novel, Day of the Dead, is due out early 2010. I write about the struggles of ordinary Mexican Americans, mostly younger narrators who have a lot to deal with. I try to use humor and I draw from my early life growing up in the barrios of San Antonio's westside. You can check out my website at www.manuelmartinez.info which includes interviews, pictures, my blog: Gag Reflects, and lots of other stuff. Check it out and feel free to write me at memorybabe2@yahoo.com to let me know what you think about my books.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 18, 2001
Format: Paperback
Intrigued by an actual news story relating the deaths of undocumented workers found in a railroad boxcar, Martinez envisions what prompted these deaths in this book. This is an intense story about Luis' crossing to the United States and the unexpected events that take place in the boxcar. Here, Luis must deal with his personal demons and yet stay strong in body and mind in order to survive. Martinez does an outstanding job relating the story with detail and emotion. He gives readers insight to what desperate immigrants attempt at doing in search of a better life and yet no know the risks involved. I agree, this book was hard to put down.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 10, 1999
Format: Paperback
there have not been too many books,i.e.novels, short stories,etc that i have read that have had the intensity,magnetizm that this novel has made me experience. it seems as if the author went on a fateful ride with the actual persons in this novel. the graphic details of the events that occur throughout the story are so intense that you cannot but continue to read on because you don't want to wait until later to find out what will happen next. the author is one of a kind. look forward to his next work, hopefully soon.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 10, 1999
Format: Paperback
there have not been too many books,i.e.novels, short stories,etc that i have read that have had the intensity,magnetizm that this novel has made me experience. it seems as if the author went on a fateful ride with the actual persons in this novel. the graphic details of the events that occur throughout the story are so intense that you cannot but continue to read on because you don't want to wait until later to find out what will happen next. the author is one of a kind. look forward to his next work, hopefully soon.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 26, 2002
Format: Paperback
This novel keeps your eyes glued to the page in white-knuckled suspense. Can't wait to get ahold of Martinez's much anticipated second novel, _Drift_, due out from Picador in April 2003.
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