contemporary,  Mexico,  physical book

REVIEW: American Dirt by Jeanine Cummins

Title: American Dirt
Author: Jeanine Cummins
Type: Fiction
Published: 2020.
Pages: 459
Publisher: Flatiron Books

“She feigns confidence in the way all mothers know how to do in front of their children. She wears the fierce maternal armor of deceit.”

Listen to me people. This book…. it’s a masterpiece.⠀

It has been a while since I read a book like this. A book that broke me and ripped the air out of my lungs. A book that made me question my values as a woman, as a mother. A book that made me want to become a better person. A person that is not that cold, not that ignorant, not that oblivious to events around me.⠀

In the modern world, illegal immigration is something we know exists but we don’t talk much about it. We don’t think much about it. And still, it is everywhere around us. The place I live is a route for Syrian immigrants on their path to Europe. I haven’t seen them, they go through woods, during the night. I’ve heard stories. But I never encountered any of the people. Don’t know what I would do if I did. We never think of their stories. We never think of their lives. We just know the political side and the negativity media makes us see. The camps, the fences, the guards. The poverty and the fear.
This book tells a story about a path a mother and a son need to take in order to stay alive. It also tells a story about the horrors of a modern world and terrible destinies. And even though it is just a story, the horrible reality is that so many people today need to run in order to live. How much fear and despair a person must feel to leave everything and start a deadly path into the unknown? My heart cant stand the thought of hopelessness in their lives that leads to decision of taking a step like that. And the situation in the world where basic needs and values of people cannot be met is just crushing. ⠀

Maybe tomorrow it can happen to me. Or maybe to a family member. We can never know what life can throw at us. And that’s why books like this are needed – to make us stop for a second, think and try to raise above our own prejudices. There can never be enough kindness and support in the world. I honestly believe in that.

My GR rating: 5 stars

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