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Publisher's Summary

In this inspirational and unflinchingly honest memoir, acclaimed author Reyna Grande describes her childhood torn between the United States and Mexico, and shines a light on the experiences, fears, and hopes of those who choose to make the harrowing journey across the border.

Reyna Grande vividly brings to life her tumultuous early years in this “compelling...unvarnished, resonant” (BookPage) story of a childhood spent torn between two parents and two countries. As her parents make the dangerous trek across the Mexican border to “El Otro Lado” (The Other Side) in pursuit of the American dream, Reyna and her siblings are forced into the already overburdened household of their stern grandmother. When their mother at last returns, Reyna prepares for her own journey to “El Otro Lado” to live with the man who has haunted her imagination for years, her long-absent father.

Funny, heartbreaking, and lyrical, The Distance Between Us poignantly captures the confusion and contradictions of childhood, reminding us that the joys and sorrows we experience are imprinted on the heart forever, calling out to us of those places we first called home.

Also available in Spanish as La distancia entre nosotros.

©2012 Reyna Grande. All rights reserved. (P)2020 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved.

What listeners say about The Distance Between Us

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opened my eyes to the beauty of our stories

absolutely incredible. had my eyes welling up between grocery store aisles and made my heart swell on my commutes to work. the passage Reyna writes about her world-changing introduction to Latin literature encapsulated everything I felt about this book. I had never had someone tell the same stories on paper that I lived and heard about in my real life. this book has sorrow, change, fear, love, solidarity and tells of an unbreakable bond between siblings as they maneuver life with absent parents, then life in a completely new world together. beautiful and heart wrenching.

6 people found this helpful

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Incredible- this will change your perspective

Never have i really considered what life for children of immigrants is like when they are left behind. This memoir tells the story of so many of these "orphan" children- and the strain that immigration and separation from their parents puts on them. Heartbreaking, hopeful, and written with incredible detail, this story will truly change you.

3 people found this helpful

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Wonderful book

I enjoyed every minute of this book. It was engaging and easy to listen to, while at the same time hard to believe this difficult childhood was someone’s reality.

1 person found this helpful

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Beautiful Story, couldn’t put it down

I listened to this book in a few days. I was caught between pacing myself to make it last and just binging it, I went with the later. Grande has such a beautiful and descriptive way with words. I highly recommend this book to those that want more insight of who the Dreamers are and the situation they are escaping from.

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Beautiful book ! loved this book. love love love.

I loved this book. It was moving and very real. loved the author. At times it breaks your heart but it is a great read.

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Birth control?

Unflinching memoir that goes from bad to worse. But there is a silver lining! This account of growing up in between cultures was difficult listening at times. The hopelessness and abandonment felt by the author hit close to home for me, but I have to tell you, listening to it in bed at night, I kept extending the sleep timer again and again. I think I listened for two and a half hours one night! Very well written account that really pulls you in and keeps you engaged I did the “book of unknown Americans” before this one, which I also recommend.

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A beautiful look into a life we are all too familiar with…

This book was extremely powerful, uplifting and validating on so many levels! I will buy this for daughters and their children!!

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A Very Sad Story of Triumph

She writes beautifully. I can picture all her stories unraveling. I love how aware she was as a small child as she recalls the scents, sounds and feelings of every situation.

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For gringos

As memories, it's ok. As narrative, it's repetitive and enerving, even if I empathize with Reyna, her family and their struggles and feel very sorry for them.

Como memoria, pasa. Como narrativa, es muy deficiente.

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Very sad, but wonderful story

The storytelling was 10/10 on this one, and it was good to learn about the human side of migration between the U.S./Mexico border. I loved the childhood stories, some were funny, some were sad, all were really entertaining and well told.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-25-20

Powerful insights into migrant life

Deep insight into the emotional strain of people fleeing from poverty. Simultaneously draining and heartwarming