September 16, 2019

UNBROKEN BY DR. EGLI COLON STEPHENS & NATALIA HARRIS


The Latina Book Club celebrates HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH every day.
To honor Latino / Latinx authors during this celebratory month, we will highlight a new book and author every day.
Join us and #ReadLatinoLit.




Kindle Direct Publishing
UNBROKEN: A Mother-Daughter Journey of Resilience, Faith and Courage
By Dr. Egli Colón Stephens and 
professional model Natalia Harris



Egli and Natalia are personal friends. They have been working hard and diligently on this book for a few years.  We are so happy that their dream has come True! The book is done and being shared with all.  Natalia is healthy and featured in Delta’s newest ad campaign, and Egli is following her daughter into modeling.

This dynamic duo will be appearing at the New York’s National Opera Center on Friday, September 20, at 7:30pm.  It’s a Free Book Launch Party.  All are welcome.  Visit them at www.eglicolonstephens.com.




SUMMARY:  UNBROKEN is a hope-filled story of a mother and a daughter, and their unwavering grip for life; reminding us that the human spirit is unbreakable. Grounded in their faith, together they battle a life-threatening disease that would forever change the course of their lives. In this chronicle you will hear these warriors’ roar, holding on to life and God's promises. Dr. Egli Colón Stephens digs into memory weaving stories of her cultura, familia, and tradiciones that armed her with the tools to survive the challenges of life. Instinctually, she began to write about the journey God had brought her from, and a decade later, here it is. Like life, which is not linear, this story takes many shifts and unexpected turns. Facing the biggest challenge to date, through her daughter’s life challenge, Egli learns what it means to be courageous, resilient and relentless while leaning on her community for prayers.

Their story has over 53,000 views on Telemundo and over 32,000 visits on their CaringBridge blog. In 2015, Egli had her article published on NBC News, and Natalia Harris has been featured on the NY Daily News, The Morning Show in Australia, The Sun in UK, Mirror, UK, Vivala, ABC News, DNAinfo, Refinery29, Women’s Health, Us Weekly and Vogue.



Photo Credit by photobyayala


ABOUT THE AUTHORS

Egli Colón Stephens, Ed.D.  has been an inner-city educator for about twenty years and currently teaches Sociology at Bronx Community College and Dominican History at Borough of Manhattan Community College, in New York. Dr. Colón Stephens is a New York State Certified teacher. She obtained a Doctorate Degree in Urban Education from the Graduate Theological Foundation. She holds a Master’s degree in Urban and Multicultural Education from the College of Mount St. Vincent where she graduated Summa Cum Laude with a cumulative 4.0 GPA and a Bachelor’s degree in Healthcare Management from St. Francis College. She is also a Certified Holistic Life Coach, a consultant and a professional lifestyle model represented by STATE management.  Dr. Colón Stephens has been a distinguished human rights guest speaker at many institutions, including the United Nations, Fordham University, and Universidad Panamericana de Aguas Calientes in Mexico.


Natalia Harris is a professional model, cancer survivor and body positive image activist. She was born and raised in New York, and her family is from the Dominican Republic and Barbados. Ms. Harris earned an Associate Degree in Liberal Arts from Santa Monica College and is currently completing a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism. She has been featured in Women’s Health Magazine, Cosmopolitan Magazine, The Morning Show in Australia, Telemundo’s Un Nuevo Día, Refinery 29. She has been featured in a campaign for fashion brand Six 02 by Foot Locker displayed across a Times Square billboard. She is one of the faces for an ad by Delta Airlines and has modeled for global makeup brand Laura Mercier.  Natalia Harris is determined and crystal clear about spreading a message of hope to the world. Although she loves fashion and modeling, her life’s purpose is to use it as a platform to heal humanity.  


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September 15, 2019

HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH CELEBRATION BEGINS WITH CONEY ISLAND SIREN BY THERESA VARELA


The Latina Book Club celebrates HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH every day.
To honor Latino / Latinx authors during this celebratory month, we will highlight a new book and author every day.
Join us and #ReadLatinoLit.




Pollen Press Publishing
CONEY ISLAND SIREN
By Theresa Varela



SUMMARY:   Call it coincidence or call it fate when Maggie Fuentes, rummaging through a Coney Island flea market, stumbles upon a a handwritten diary whose author, a young girl of the nineteenth century names Ellen, reveals dreadful secrets that parallel Maggie's own. Maggie sinks deep into the sinister maelstrom of her lover, Police Officer Frank Ramirez, until the stark urgency of lines written by a kindred spirit compel her to confront the reality of her- and their- lives. Far removed from each other in time but bonded by the white-capped ocean, amusement park locale, and converging torments, it seems particularly apt that the sleight-of-hand landscape of luck and chance provides the setting for Maggie's harrowing and hypnotic encounter with turmoil, then kismet, and ultimately, clarity and reawakening.

Read our review by clicking here.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:   Award winning Puerto Rican author, Theresa Varela, was born and raised in Brooklyn, NYC. She is the recipient of International Latino Book Awards for Covering the Sun with My Hand in 2015 and Nights of Indigo Blue: A Daisy Muñiz Mystery in 2016. Dr. Varela holds a PhD in Nursing Research and Theory Development and currently works with the mentally ill homeless population in NYC. She is a member of the National Association of Hispanic Nurses; a member of Las Comadres para las Americas and is on the Advisory Board of the Latina 50 Plus program. She is Co-Founder of La Pluma y La Tinta- a Writer's Workshop. Her blog LatinaLibations on Writing and All Things of the Spirit can be found at theresavarela.com.



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September 3, 2019

BOOK OF THE MONTH: THE OTHER SIDE BY JUAN PABLO VILLALOBOS



The Latina Book Club is proud to announce it's September Book of the Month, THE OTHER SIDE, by award-winning Mexican author Juan Pablo Villalobos.  
This collection of stories could have been ripped right out of the current headlines.  These are stories that must be read, must be shared.
Happy Reading.




Farrar, Straus & Giroux
You can't really tell what time it is when you're in the freezer.

Fear. Despair. Hopefulness. Reunions. Separations.
Villalobos shines a glaring light on the current immigration and asylum policy in the United States. It's an emotional, gut-wrenching, and vivid portrayal of border-life today.

SUMMARY:  Every year, thousands of migrant children and teens cross the U.S.-Mexico border. The journey is treacherous and sometimes deadly, but worth the risk for migrants who are escaping gang violence and poverty in their home countries. And for those refugees who do succeed? They face an immigration process that is as winding and multi-tiered as the journey that brought them here.
In this book, award-winning Mexican author Juan Pablo Villalobos strings together the diverse experiences of eleven real migrant teenagers, offering readers a beginning road map to issues facing the region. These timely accounts of courage, sacrifice, and survival—including two fourteen-year-old girls forming a tenuous friendship as they wait in a frigid holding cell, a boy in Chicago beginning to craft his future while piecing together his past in El Salvador, and cousins learning to lift each other up through angry waters—offer a rare and invaluable window into the U.S.–Central American refugee crisis.
In turns optimistic and heartbreaking, THE OTHER SIDE balances the boundless hope at the center of immigration with the weight of its risks and repercussions. Here is a necessary read for young people on both sides of the issue.



Juan Pablo Villalobos was born in Guadalajara, Mexico, in 1973. He has written literary criticism, film criticism, and short stories. Villalobos has penned multiple books, including DOWN THE RABBIT HOLE, which has been translated into fifteen languages and was shortlisted for the Guardian First Book Award, and QUESADILLAS. He lives in Barcelona, Spain, with his wife and their two sons.



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September 1, 2019

SEPTEMBER BOOK RELEASES




The Latina Book Club is excited about the new books being released this month.  
There are debuts, thrillers, coming of age stories, poetry, science fiction, and more.  
Below are some of the new releases.  As we know of more, we will post.  
Happy Reading!





TRACING THE HORSE
Poems by Diana Marie Delgado
BOA Editions Limited

Set in Southern California's San Gabriel Valley, Diana Marie Delgado’s debut poetry collection follows the coming-of-age of a young Mexican-American woman trying 
to make sense of who she is amidst a family and community weighted by violence and addiction.


DOMINICANA
by Angie Cruz
Flatiron Books

Amid unrest in Dominican Republic, 15-year old Ana marries a man twice her age to get to New York City. 
Married life proves anything but happy and Ana has a lot of growing up to do.


BECOMING BEATRIZ
by Tami Charles
Charlesbridge Teen

Beatriz' just wants to be a professional dancer and get out of her bad drug infested, gang runned neighborhood.  
But when her quinceaňero turns into a war zone, dreams are shattered forever.


CHILLING EFFECT
by Valerie Valdes
Harper Voyager

Kidnappers, alien emperors, psychic cats, and Captain Eva Innocente is out of coffee.  
Off beat adventure of a galaxy captain and her crew out to rescue her sister.


THE TENTH GIRL
by Sara Faring
Macmillan

A haunted Argentinian mansion. A family curse. A new young teacher, Mavi, looking into the disappearance of one of her ten students. 
This is a gothic psychological thriller with a haunting twist.


THE PRICE OF GRACE
Black Ops Confidential Series, Book 2
by Diana Muňoz Stewart
Sourcebooks Casablanca

Gracie Parish is a member of a secret sisterhood of vigilantes. Special Agent Dusty McAllister is hoping Gracie is his ticket in. 
Fat chance, but there is something between them.  This is a dangerous and non-stop action romantic suspense series. 


THE OTHER SIDE
Stories of Central American Teen Refugees
Who Dream of Crossing the Border
by Juan Pablo Villalobos
Farrar, Straus & Giroux

Courage. Sacrifice. Survival. Award-winning Mexican author Juan Pablo Villalobos explores illegal immigration 
with this emotionally raw and timely nonfiction book about ten Central American teens and their journeys to the United States.



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June 5, 2019

BOOK OF THE MONTH: CONEY ISLAND SIREN BY THERESA VARELA



  
The Latina Book Club is proud to name CONEY ISLAND SIREN by Theresa Varela as Book of the Month.  It’s an amazing book on a hard topic with a surprising ending.  Readers will be captivated.

Theresa invites everyone to her book launch on Wednesday, June 12, 6-8 pm at the Nuyorican Poets Café on 236 East Third Street, NYC.  All readers welcomed. Books will be on sale.  Get your signed copy there!





“If I pen my thoughts on paper, are they no longer my secret?”   --Ellen

 “If you stay silent because of fear, you are forever voiceless.”  –Maggie



Pollen Press Publishing LLC
Astounding. Mesmerizing. Engaging.

Theresa Varela cleverly weaves fact and fiction, suspense and magical realism in her new captivating novel set against the backdrop of the joyful, chaotic, wondrous world of Coney Island.  

Domestic violence is not pretty.  It’s an endless nightmarish roller coaster ride; a vicious cycle not easily recognized from within or without until it’s too late.  Readers will sympathize with Maggie, even as they want to shake her into opening her eyes and doing anything, everything to get out from under a monster’s thumb.  However, that’s easier said than done.  Nothing will change for Maggie, or any woman, until they take a stand. Gods, Goddesses, friends, counselors, lawyers and cops can help, but the victim herself has to take that first step towards a new life, a new self.  

CONEY ISLAND SIREN keeps readers on the edge of their seat, lost in Maggie’s despair, then elated at her rebirth, and finally stunned at her shot at freedom.



BOOK SUMMARY:   Maggie Fuentes is a lucky woman. She has a great life: she lives by Coney Island, has a fancy apartment, is a well-liked nurse at a leading hospital, and her handsome boyfriend Police Officer Frank Ramirez is up for detective.  She is so happy.  In public.

In private, Maggie’s life is hell. She mistook Frank’s destructive possessiveness for love, and now she is a prisoner to his dark needs.  Cops can’t, won’t help.  She suffers in silence and “adjusts” her attitude after each insult, each blow.  Drugs are her favorite escape and soon she is hooked on opioids, which she steals from her patients.  Journaling is another escape, but she stops because she can’t be honest with herself. 

However, she loses herself in a journal she found at a Coney Island flea market about a turn of the century servant named Ellen; who also fell for a sweet talking monster.  The more she reads Ellen’s story, the more it echoes her own.  “I’m every woman,” thinks Maggie; every woman who has ever been abused -- her Mom, her best friend, Ellen and even Frank’s mother.  She dreams of being a siren and walking into the sea, of being free, of controlling her destiny, but she is stuck in an endless rollercoaster of violence.  Her job is at risk, her addiction growing out of control, Frank’s violence is escalating, all men turn out to be pigs, and her one friend turns her back on her.  Maggie’s chasing the dragon and the dragon is chasing her.  But, when her one chance at freedom arrives, a fearful but determined Maggie makes the most startling decision of her life.


AUTHOR BIO:   Award-winning Puerto Rican author Theresa Varela was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York.  She is the recipient of International Latino Book Awards for COVERING THE SUN WITH MY HAND in 2015 and NIGHTS OF INDIGO BLUE: A DAISY MUŇIZ in 2016.  Dr. Varela holds a PhD in Nursing Research and Theory Development, and currently works with the mentally ill homeless population in New York City.  She is a member of the National Association of Hispanic Nurses and a member of Las Comadres Para Las Americas, and is on the Advisory Board of the Latina 50 Plus program. Theresa is co-founder of La Pluma y La Tinta, a Writer’s Workshop.  Her blog, LatinaLibations on Writing and All Things of the Spirit, can be found at www.theresavarela.com. 

Check out our February / Valentine's Day interview with Theresa by clicking here.





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