Names on a Map: A Novel

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HarperCollins, Feb 5, 2008 - Fiction - 448 pages
1 Review

The Espejo family of El Paso, Texas, is like so many others in America in 1967, trying to make sense of a rapidly escalating war they feel does not concern them. But when the eldest son, Gustavo, a complex and errant rebel, receives a certified letter ordering him to report to basic training, he chooses to flee instead to Mexico. Retreating back to the land of his grandfather—a foreign country to which he is no longer culturally connected—Gustavo sets into motion a series of events that will have catastrophic consequences on the fragile bonds holding the family together.

Told with raw power and searing bluntness, and filled with important themes as immediate as today’s headlines, Names on a Map is arguably the most important work to date of a major American literary artist.

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User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

A sweeping epic about the choices a Mexican-American El Paso family makes during the Vietnam War.Senz (In Perfect Light, 2005, etc.) uses the Espejo family to explore the effect of war on immigrant ... Read full review

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User Review  - CarolynSchroeder - LibraryThing

In many ways, this is a beautiful, poetic novel about a Mexican-American family (Father-Octavio, Mother-Lordes, Twin Son-Gustavo, Twin Daughter-Xochil, Youngest Son-Charlie and Grandmother-Rosario) in ... Read full review

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About the author (2008)

Benjamin Alire Senz is the author of In Perfect Light, Carry Me Like Water, and House of Forgetting, as well as the author of several children’s books. He won the American Book Award for his collection of poems Calendar of Dust. Senz is the chair of the creative writing department at the University of Texas-El Paso.

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