The book selection for Pasadena’s seventh One City, One Story community reading celebration is “The Hummingbird’s Daughter” by Luis Alberto Urrea.
I just started reading it on Tuesday night and I'm about 100 pages into the substantial biographical novel.
Part folk tale, part history and 100% mesmerizing, it takes place in revolutionary-era Mexico in the late 19th century and is filled with vaqueros, bandits, indigenous Yaquis and a whole cast of other characters.
At the heart of it all is Teresita, known in Mexico to this day as La Santa de Cabora. Born to an impoverished mother who abandons her, she seems destined to live in dire poverty at the hands of her abusive aunt until Teresita, just a small child, walks into a certain house one day and her life begins to change forever.
My favorite character -- so far -- is Huila, a powerful, cantankerous healer who lovingly, patiently shows Teresita that she is worth something while encouraging her natural, mystical gifts.
Urrea completed two decades of research about his ancestor before writing "The Hummingbird's Daughter.
One City, One Story community activities and events, including book discussion groups, a film series, lectures and more, will be scheduled in March. I'll keep you posted on that.
I am very excited to announce the the author will speak to the community about "The Hummingbird's Daughter" during a free event Sunday, April 5, from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Pasadena Convention Center.
You'll find more information here.
Get the book! You can check it out at Pasadena Central Library or you can buy it at Vromans.