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Enrique's Journey Audible – Unabridged

4.3 out of 5 stars 392 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Audible Audio Edition
  • Listening Length: 9 hours and 41 minutes
  • Program Type: Audiobook
  • Version: Unabridged
  • Publisher: Audible Studios
  • Audible.com Release Date: September 24, 2008
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001GPJW6G
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank:

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Rick Spell VINE VOICE on March 21, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a fascinating book concerning the flood of young Central Americans coming to America and the treacherous journey they must undertake. But it looks at the influx of illegal aliens into America in a new light. These youths who travel by train up to 1,600 miles north through Mexico are coming to find their Mother's who have left them years ago to have money to support their kids back in Nicaragua, Honduras or Guatemala. Years before these mothers faced raising kids as a single mother as the tight Catholic families in these countries are pulling apart. With limited jobs, these women smuggle to America and send money back. But the emotional toll on these kids is traumatic and many choose to journey to America, many at an age much too young.

The Pulitzer Prize winning author rode the trains and researched completely the significant danger in the first state of Chiapas where the risk of being robbed, raped or killed is the greatest. The next state shows the true spirit of the Mexican people as many bring food and clothing to this rag-tag group of refugees. Great detail is spent describing areas to avoid and relationships with smugglers, police and "la migra", the immigration police.

The final part of the journey across the river to America is also traumatic and great detail is spent on different ways of crossing, many involving paying "coyotes" significant money to cross with no guarantees they will not be robbed.

But this book does not end there as finally Enrique finds his mother in North Carolina. But is she really a "Mother" since she hasn't seen her son in about 10 years? Obviously their relationship is unique and the book delves in to the difficulty.

You will be educated on a significant human rights issue effecting America.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As I continue discussing this book with my freshman composition students, I realize the story needs more context. My freshman are too quick to see ENRIQUE'S journey as THE IMMIGRANT journey--I remind them again and again that this is the story of ONE boy and his family. It's misleading to discuss our US immigration "problem" without putting it into the context of globalization. Nazario is clearly critical of the choices her subjects make, but what are the alternatives? It's fair to open this question for conversation, but if you read this story, realize that this is not the end of the discussion--it's barely the beginning. This should be used as an introduction to a discussion on immigration--not the basis for that discussion. A good teaching tool--but keep the discussion going and use other sources as well. A colleague in social science plans to use it in class: it's interesting how Nazario's characterization of Enrique is extremely sympathetic UNTIL he reaches the US border--once across it, he becomes, quite simply, a social problem.
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Format: Hardcover
I read this story when it was in the LA Times and couldn't wait for the book.

I read the story cover to cover in a weekend and thought it was the best non-fiction work I have read in years. Obviously, Ms. Nazario's story shows that our immigration problem isn't as simple as it seems. I was very moved by this story and urge everyone to read it.
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Format: Hardcover
In an excellent book based on the famous news feature series by the same journalist, the trials and tribulations of immigrant populations in economic, social, cultural, and emotional contexts is well highlighted. It is sheer coincidence that I happen to read this book the same day the US Senate reached a "compromise" on immigration reform. Lost in political debates of immigration, is the sheer human facets of the people involved. This book (just as the series did a few years ago) provides a human side to relate to when politicians/"experts" debate about immigration. The author is very careful not to condone illegal immigration by focusing on the human tolls of the people trying to get to the U.S. in any form, irrespective how miserably the previous several attempts have failed. Using the story of one teenager's quest for finding his mother as the central theme, the book explores the motivation of those who make such seemingly improbable decisions, the dangers of the travel itself, the role (or lack thereof) of governments, religious/charity organizations, communities along the travel route, and the misery from which these 'optimists' are trying to escape from. Any amount of objective analysis will not take away the immense emotional impact the book will have on a reader - the strains of motherhood and the pensive childhood of those left behind are exposed without any sensationalism. The sheer gravity of the story is compelling enough.

Written in a simple, yet powerful, narrative style, the author clearly enables the reader to imagine the journey described in the book. An absolute must-read, and perhaps one of the best non-fiction books. You will never view immigration as a political issue again (whether thats good or bad, is upto you)..guaranteed.
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Format: Hardcover
The U.S. is experiencing the largest wave of immigration in its history, transforming it in the process. Each year an estimated 700,000 enter illegally and another million legally. A growing number are single mothers, leaving their children with relatives or neighbors.

Women in Honduras earn $40-120 per month in factories, cleaning houses, or providing child care. A hut with no bathroom or kitchen rents for almost $30/month. Many of their children are so malnourished they can't stand for long, and often they are taken out of school at a very early age to care for siblings or sell tortillas.

Every woman Nazario interviewed in the U.S. who had left children behind thought the separation would be brief. Reality is it takes years and years to reunite, and by the time it happens the children are usually very angry - feeling abandoned. Too often the boys seek out gangs to try and find the love they sought from their mothers; too often the girls get pregnant and form their own families. Most children who set out to rejoining their mothers don't make it.

Nazario spent over six months traveling in Honduras, Mexico, and the U.S. tracing and re-tracing Enrique's steps; in addition, she spent time with Enrique and interviewed him and his family.

Enrique's mother left him (with her estranged husband - his father) and his sister (with her own sister) when he was five. Unfortunately, Enrique is soon kicked out of his father's home by a new potential step-mother, and an uncle's after his new father-figure is murdered in a robbery. After about eleven years without her and an increasing glue-sniffing habit, he decides to join his mother in America.

Seven times Enrique is caught and returned to Honduras.
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