Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
The House on Mango Street Paperback – April 3, 1991
|New from||Used from|
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
From Publishers Weekly
Esperanza Cordero, a girl coming of age in the Hispanic quarter of Chicago, uses poems and stories to express thoughts and emotions about her oppressive environment. (Apr.)no PW review
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.
“A classic. . . . This little book has made a great space for itself on the shelf of American literature.” —Julia Alvarez
“Afortunado! Lucky! Lucky the generation who grew up with Esperanza and The House on Mango Street. And lucky future readers. This funny, beautiful book will always be with us.” —Maxine Hong Kingston
“Cisneros draws on her rich [Latino] heritage . . . and seduces with precise, spare prose, creat[ing] unforgettable characters we want to lift off the page. She is not only a gifted writer, but an absolutely essential one.” —Bebe Moore Campbell, The New York Times Book Review
“Marvelous . . . spare yet luminous. The subtle power of Cisneros’s storytelling is evident. She communicates all the rapture and rage of growing up in a modern world.” —San Francisco Cronicle
“A deeply moving novel...delightful and poignant. . . . Like the best of poetry, it opens the windows of the heart without a wasted word.” —Miami Herald
“Sandra Cisneros is one of the most brillant of today’s young writers. Her work is sensitive, alert, nuanceful . . . rich with music and picture.” —Gwendolyn Books
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
One major struggle seen throughout the novella is that of self-definition, as every decision Esperanza makes is underscored by her struggle to define herself. In the beginning of the novel, she desperately tries to escape the identity that has been given to her by her family; she wishes she could “baptize herself under a new name, a name more like the real me, the one nobody sees.” Because Esperanza doesn’t even know who she herself is yet, she tries to forge an identity for herself from everything that she thinks she should be like. One such attempt is her pursuit to try to be like Sally, “the girl with eyes like Egypt and nylons the color of smoke.” However, she soon finds that she is not Sally, and she can’t force herself to be more like her. Ultimately, the subsequent journey of acceptance throughout the novella leads her to discovering how to define herself. She learns to accept where she is from, and even though she knows that “one day [she] will go away,” she will always be the girl from the house on Mango Street.
From her struggle of self-definition to many other issues she faces in the book, Esperanza is a strong and complex heroin to this strong and complex novella. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this novella, and I give it four out of five stars. I thought it was a great read, but it did not deeply move me in the way a five star book would.
Chicano literature is so strong and the political discourse is so important. In this narrative, we can see the main character of the book that does not like to be who she is, she does not like to live where she lives, she does not like to be associated to the rest of the town. We see so many times how the latino culture of “you do what you are told” is presented on the text, mainly on the part of get a job at the age of 16, or around that. However, this is totally related to the economical struggles that the family has, like most of all the Mexican families living in the States. The father is a gardener and some might find this stereotypical but I see it more like a denounce.
For instance, Esperanza struts in heels around the street with two other young girls, and is signaled over by a bum. When asked for a kiss, Esperanza is able to avoid the situation. However, when she matures slightly, she is hired at a photography company, and on the first day, makes friends with an old man who says, “it was his birthday and would [she] please give him a birthday kiss. [She} thought [she] would because he was so old and just as [she] was about to put [her] lips on his cheek, he grabs [her] face with both hands and kisses [her] hard on the mouth and doesn't let go.” Her first kiss is by force, and much of her initiation into mature subjects is done similarly in order to highlight the disturbing truth behind young girls growing up in neighborhoods similar to the one of Mango Street. The novel focuses on Esperanza’s hope, as it is her name, and her desire to live in a house and to “be able to point” at it. She does not want the life that her grandmother received: “she looked out the window her whole life, the way so many women sit their sadness on an elbow… Esperanza. [She had] inherited her name, but [she doesn't] want to inherit her place by the window.” Esperanza is unfortunately a very relatable character whose story does not end with the novel; rather, it continues on in modern society, claiming the youth of many other young Latinas.
The House on Mango Street is a coming-of-age story that reveals the harsh reality of living as a young Latina in Chicago, as well as other parts of the world. It provides a beautiful, yet grotesque take on many mature subjects, and deserves to be read. I rate this novel 4.5/5 stars.
Most recent customer reviews
The book, The House on Mango Street, by Sandra Cisneros, is a Novella that follows the coming of age of the main...Read more