Enrique's Journey Author:Sonia Nazario In this astonishing true story, award-winning journalist Sonia Nazario recounts the unforgettable odyssey of a Honduran boy who braves unimaginable hardship and peril to reach his mother in the United States. — When Enrique is five years old, his mother, Lourdes, too poor to feed her children, leaves Honduras to work in the United States. The mov... more »e allows her to send money back home to Enrique so he can eat better and go to school past the third grade.
Lourdes promises Enrique she will return quickly. But she struggles in America. Years pass. He begs for his mother to come back. Without her, he becomes lonely and troubled. When she calls, Lourdes tells him to be patient. Enrique despairs of ever seeing her again. After eleven years apart, he decides he will go find her.
Enrique sets off alone from Tegucigalpa, with little more than a slip of paper bearing his mother’s North Carolina telephone number. Without money, he will make the dangerous and illegal trek up the length of Mexico the only way he can–clinging to the sides and tops of freight trains.
With gritty determination and a deep longing to be by his mother’s side, Enrique travels through hostile, unknown worlds. Each step of the way through Mexico, he and other migrants, many of them children, are hunted like animals. Gangsters control the tops of the trains. Bandits rob and kill migrants up and down the tracks. Corrupt cops all along the route are out to fleece and deport them. To evade Mexican police and immigration authorities, they must jump onto and off the moving boxcars they call El Tren de la Muerte–The Train of Death. Enrique pushes forward using his wit, courage, and hope–and the kindness of strangers. It is an epic journey, one thousands of immigrant children make each year to find their mothers in the United States.
Based on the Los Angeles Times newspaper series that won two Pulitzer Prizes, one for feature writing and another for feature photography, Enrique’s Journey is the timeless story of families torn apart, the yearning to be together again, and a boy who will risk his life to find the mother he loves.
Wow--what a powerful and important book. It's heartwrenching, to say the least. And it makes a powerful argument for amnesty while presenting the dissenting argument. This is a must read for everyone, in my opinion.
While the details of Enrique's journey were troubling and heartbreaking, the manor in which it was written lacked any emotion. It was a litany of facts and figures with a lot of names thrown in for good measure. It was hard to feel anything, it was like reading a text book or watching an episode of Animal Kingdom: watch as the young Honduran mother leaves her child behind to search for money and food in a foreign country. Will the child survive will it grow to resent her.... There were almost too many horrifying details to the point of desensitization. If the writer had concentrated only Enrique's Journey and not that of hundreds of others trying to flee the oppression and poverty of their countries it would have been easier to become emotionally involved in his journey and outcome.
This book had me thinking for months. It really gives an insight into a culture and a macro level problem that is typically only understood from the surface. The author did a great job pulling this book together.
There is so much discussion about illegal imigrants as of late. This book sheds light on the issue of how and why as well as many of the implications of the people making the trip or should I say, trying to make the trip. Definatley thought provoking.