Moments from ¡Gringo! are familiar to the serious Mextripper: a lone van nestles for the night at the foot of a desert mountain, a Mexican family arrives for a fully clothed swim in the river, a ghost campground is recognized by....Comic book doesnt quite capture ¡Gringo!, but its not a graphic novel either.... (more) Review by Felisa Rosa Rogers
Geo-Mexico: The Geography and Dynamics of Modern Mexico, by Richard Rhoda and Tony Burton, 2010 Canada: Sombrero Books
An incredibly readable account of how Dr.Timothy Knab started out to do a scientific sociological study of the political/social struggles of the curanderos (medicine men/women) of the area and ended up becoming the pupil of acurandero . As he slowly wins the trust of the locals, Knab is drawn into a generations-long feud among the "witches" of the area involving alleged poisonings and spells which have terrorized the community.... (Full Review by Flo Ariessohn) Order A War Of Witches
These oversized, abundantly illustrated books by Bobbi Salinas-Norman will make folk art come to life for both children and adults. Using two of the most important and colorful Indo-Hispanic holidays as examples, Bobbi Salinas-Norman clearly explains the cultural roots of Indo-Hispanic folk art and its importance in contemporary life. "The Day of the Dead offers us the opportunity to examine this universal experience in the context of a family tradition, illuminated by the hope of an afterlife. "In the pre-Hispanic cultures of Meso-America, especially the Nahua (Toltec, Aztec, Tlaxcaltec, Chichimec, Tecpanec and others from the Valley of Mexico), life was seen as a dream. Only in dying did a human being truly awake. For a people who lived with human suffering, death offered a release from daily living and the restrictions imposed by other cultures. Death was not feared because it was inevitable." (Excerpt) Order from Powell's in Portland
Bobbi Salinas is also the author of The Three Little Pigs.
A Treasury of Mexican Folkways: The Customs, Myths, Folklore, Traditions, Beliefs, Fiestas, Dances, and Songs of the Mexican People
By Frances Toor, 1985, Bonanza Books. Order A Treasury of Mexican Folkways
By Alan Riding. A fascinating look at the inner workings of Mexico, from popular customs to its complex political systems. Highly praised, even by Mexicans. Order Distant Neighbors
by Edward Hall, 1981, Anchor Books, Doubleday. The author examines the roots of culture and suggests why Mexicans are so uniquely... Mexican. Order Beyond Culture
By Craig Storti, 1990, Intercultural Press, Inc. If youve dreamed of living in Mexico but wondered how youd adapt, this book analyzes the causes of culture shock and gives how-to-cope suggestions that really work. Storti avoids lecturing and tempers practical advice on dealing with foreign cultures with illuminating examples and wonderful, entertaining excerpts from an illustrious field of writers. Order The Art of Crossing Cultures
by Covarrubias, 1946, Alfred A. Knopf. Another classic work on Mexican culture and folkways. Order Mexico South from Powell's in Portland
By Freidrich Katz, 1998. 100th Anniversary of the Mexican Revolution.
If I hadn't found this book used, for just two bucks, the combination of the author's scholarly credentials and the odd title might well have deflected me from a most illuminating and delightful read.... (Full Review) Order Judas at the Jockey Club
By Hugh Thomas, 1993, Random House. Using previously unpublished material gleaned from ancient archives, the author has created the only history book I simply couldn't put down. His story of the Conquest is a fantastic accomplishment that outdoes fiction. Order The Conquest of Mexico
By Dana and Ginger Lamb, Santa Barbara Press. When I first began exploring Mexico I was strongly influenced by the Lamb's gutsy yet humorous approach to adventure. The Lambs set off for Mexico in 1937 with $10.16 in their pockets and an unerring, outrageous nose for adventure. Wear a pith helmet and sharpen your machete for this one. Order this out-of-print book from Powell's in Portland.
By Lamb and Cleveland, 1938, Harper and Brothers Publishers.Order this out-of-print book from Powell's in Portland.
By S. Guzmán-C. In 1975, S. Guzmán-C. left a meaningless job and a rather insipid life and headed for western Mexico. As a tourist Guzmán cannot legally work in Mexico, but nonetheless takes a succession of jobs with fishermen, chicken ranchers, janitors, farmers and leather workers. If finding work does not seem all that difficult in Mexico, the same cant be said for a decent wage. Like millions of Mexicans, Guzmáns initial hopes of a good living are gradually replaced by a life of poverty. The author eventually confronts the wrenching dilemma that so many hardworking, impoverished Mexicans face today -- that of leaving their friends and family behind and heading north, toward the elusive promise of a better life. A Vagabond In Mexico is an unusual, thought-provoking book. In particular, anyone who thinks that Mexican illegals are easily drawn over the border should find it instructive....(For a full review) Order A Vagabond in Mexico
By Spratling, 1932, Little, Brown and Company. (Originally entitled "Little Mexico".) Order this out-of-print book from Powell's in Portland.
By Charles Flandrau, 1990, Eland & Hippocrene. First published in 1908, this humorous but compassionate account of five years on a remote coffee plantation is probably my favorite book on Mexico. Flandraus insights into the customs and character of rural Mexicansand expatriate gringosstill apply today. Order this out-of-print book from Powell's in Portland.
By Patrick Oster, 1989, Harper and Row Publishers. Order The Mexicans
By Kenneth Gangemi. From Acapulco and Bakery, through Cerveza... and Mangoes..., Gangemis attention shifts from Political Notes... to Street Snacks... and finally, Zocalo. I considered it an achievement, for someone of my background, to be able to sit quietly in a plaza and do absolutely nothing. When I lived in Mexico I had the time for such a worthwhile activity. Sitting in the plaza I had the time to think about the really important things, such as the differences between the morning and afternoon sunshine. Highly recommended! .... (Full Review) Order The Volcanoes from Puebla
By Bernard Fontana, 1997. The subtitle of the book derives from the Tarahumar's belief that the soul works at night while the body sleeps and that during this "day of the moon" both the spirits of the dead and the souls of the living move about in their mysterious ways.
By Richard Grant, 2008. A guy looking for adventure and trouble, and finding it.
By Goodwin & Goodwin, 2000. Apaches were in the Sierra Madre as late as the 1940's as documented by a kidnapping near Bacadehuachi. This book's investigation takes place primarily in the Sierra Las Espuelas, just west of Janos; but still the remote sierras.
By Robert Rivard, 2003. A murder investigaion in the Sierra Huichol.
By Jeff Biggers, 2006. A tale of an American couple trying to fit in, and be accepted in a Tarahumaran village in the1980's.
By Christopheer McDougall, 2009. On the New York Times bestseller book list for over 2 years. His book is a good read on several counts, and really made the running shoe industry take note- so they made those barefoot runners, instead. His book is interesting for (1)endurance, featuring the Tarahumara, (2) Caballo Blanco history, (3) The myth of running shoe, and that they basically created foot problems by trying to outdo nature's engineering of the foot.
By James OReilly and Larry Habegger, 1994, Travelers Tales Inc. An anthology of articles, stories and musings from a wide variety of authors. Order Travelers Tales: Mexico
By Francis Gardiner Gooch, 1887, reprint by Southern Illinois University Press. Order this out-of-print book from Powell's in Portland.
By Wallace Gillpatrick, 1912, The Century Co. Order this out-of-print book from Powell's in Portland.
By Mary Del Villar, Fred Del Villar, Mary Del Villar & Susan Hardy Aiken, 1953. (reprint 1991) Order Where the Strange Roads Go Down
By James, 1994, InkPot Press (poetry) Tales of 3 gringas who operate a bakery in a remote Yucatecan village. Order The Bakery of the Three Whores from Powell's in Portland.
By Harry Carr, 1931, Houghton Mifflin Company. Order Old Mother Mexico from Powell's in Portland.
The story has plenty to lure the reader: banditry, kidnapping, hubris, madness; but it is a fine attention to detail, on both the factual and visceral levels, that distinguishes C.M. Mayo's first novel, The Last Prince of the Mexican Empire. Drawing from original research and a nuanced understanding of Mexico, Mayo relates one of the country's more fantastic historical episodes: Maximilian, an idealistic Austrian prince who, with French backing, is crowned emperor of Mexico in 1864.
With his young wife, the Belgian princess Charlotte, Maximilian is thrust into a role that makes Obama's 2008 task list seem mild . (more) Review by Felisa Churpa Rosa Rogers. Order The Last Prince of the Mexican Empire...
"I've recently finished Victor Villasenor's family biography, Rain of Gold, a rich historical recounting of how both branches of his Mexican rooted family were forced by revolution to migrate to the north, to the United States. In it he tells the magnificent love story of his parents. Do loves like that truly happen? His father deceived his mother, kept secret his source of livelihood as boot-legger and gambler for the first several years of their marriage. Here was intentional deception, not the mere blindness of impassioned love. How could the lies not undermine, scar, cripple the relationship? Yet that marriage endured, more happily than not, according to his cuenta." Review by Tina Rosa from her story, "56". Order Rain of Gold
By Harriet Doerr. A bright, moving account of Americans living in a small Mexican village. (fiction) Order Stones for Ibarra
By Malcolm Lowry. A dark, introspective and powerfully written cantina-crawl that probably isnt for everyone. (fiction) Reprinted April 2,000. Order Under the Volcano
Good Novels about Mexico are as rare as a blue-eyed Iguana. Many aspiring novelists feel compelled to exaggerate Mexico, which is unfortunate because the real Mexico and real Mexicans are far more fascinating than a Mexico depicted by a runaway imagination....Mr. Kira constructs an utterly believable saga about life in a remote Baja fish camp in the middle third of this century. The characters are complex and the dangers formidable as the pangueros and their families go about living solely at the whim of the elements.... (more) Review by David "El Codo" Eidell Order King of the Moon
By Charles Portis. The author of True Grit writes an entertaining saga of expatriate escapades among the Maya. Order Gringos
Also good by Charles Portis, The Dog of the South (fiction). Order The Dog of the South
By Francisco Goldman, 1992, Atlantic Monthly Press (fiction). Order The Long Night of White Chickens
By Gary Jennings. A complete hammock book, this thick, sexy historical saga oozes blood and pre-Columbian details. (fiction) Order Aztec
By Bruno Traven. You've seen the movie, now try the book. (fiction) Order The Treasure of the Sierra Madre
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