The House of Broken Angels

The House of Broken Angels

A Novel

Book - 2018
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In this "raucous, moving, and necessary" ( San Francisco Chronicle ) story by a Pulitzer Prize finalist, the De La Cruzes, a family on the Mexican-American border, celebrate two of their most beloved relatives during a joyous and bittersweet weekend.
National Bestseller and National Book Critics Circle Award finalist
A New York Times Notable Book / One of the Best Books of the Year from National Public Radio, American Library Association, San Francisco Chronicle, BookPage, Newsday, BuzzFeed, Kirkus Reviews, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Literary Hub
"All we do, mija, is love. Love is the answer. Nothing stops it. Not borders. Not death."
In his final days, beloved and ailing patriarch Miguel Angel de La Cruz, affectionately called Big Angel, has summoned his entire clan for one last legendary birthday party. But as the party approaches, his mother, nearly one hundred, dies, transforming the weekend into a farewell doubleheader. Among the guests is Big Angel's half brother, known as Little Angel, who must reckon with the truth that although he shares a father with his siblings, he has not, as a half gringo, shared a life.
Across two bittersweet days in their San Diego neighborhood, the revelers mingle among the palm trees and cacti, celebrating the lives of Big Angel and his mother, and recounting the many inspiring tales that have passed into family lore, the acts both ordinary and heroic that brought these citizens to a fraught and sublime country and allowed them to flourish in the land they have come to call home.
Teeming with brilliance and humor, authentic at every turn, The House of Broken Angels is Luis Alberto Urrea at his best, and cements his reputation as a storyteller of the first rank.

"Epic . . . Rambunctious . . . Highly entertaining." -- New York Times Book Review
"Intimate and touching . . . the stuff of legend." -- San Francisco Chronicle
"An immensely charming and moving tale." -- Boston Globe
Publisher: New York :, Little, Brown and Company,, 2018.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780316154888
0316154881
Branch Call Number: FICTION Urrea Luis 02/2018
Characteristics: 326 pages ;,25 cm

Opinion

From Library Staff

February 21 Book Selection

A family saga that asks what it means to be American.


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Groszerita Mar 17, 2019

Urrea's writing is so deeply intimate, raw and real. Spanish and spanglish words are woven in, it's as if though I am an observer watching and hearing Big Angel's familia.
I feel for Little Angel and his sense of not feeling like familia, not feeling like he belongs, yet he knows he does. I see Big Angel's godfather status and feel sympathy for him.

n
nalahblueberry5
Mar 11, 2019

Thoroughly enjoyed this book

v
Vmcfadin
Feb 23, 2019

Didn’t finish this book. Unfortunately I am just learning Spanish so there were many words I had to look up. Doesn’t make for a fun reading experience.

b
bairdbrain
Jan 13, 2019

Big Angel has a birthday bash while family is in gathered, one day after his mother's funeral. Their histories unfold revealing old wounds and connections. Big Angel is dying but this book brims with life, affection, humor and strife. The characters are unique and the telling is generous, the dialog is both sparkling and believable. This book is easily one of my favorites.

l
legalsec2504
Nov 20, 2018

NY Times 2018 recommended book.

b
brangwinn
Jun 12, 2018

Oh, what a touching story of a Mexican-American famiy. Great characters composed of many parts just as people are. To some one Angel might be a father, to another, a husband, another, a leader in the community. The elder Angel’s much younger half-brother also named Angel is a college professor, a single man, a nephew and a person who might appear to have separated from his heritage. This novel pulls apart all the layers you’ll find in a family.

a
Aquanblue
Mar 29, 2018

I enjoyed this cultural read. The familiarity and intimacy in which he shares the details enables the reader to experience the cultural exchange even if they are a "Gringo" It is a great way to help us all be tolerate people with humanity at the center of our differences. I bought my own copy, I loved this so much.

PimaLib_MaryG Mar 26, 2018

I have been waiting for this book for months and it was every bit as good as I expected and then some. The epic tale of Big Angel and his brother Little Angel takes place over two days, but through flashbacks it spans a lifetime. Urrea spins the tale of a cross-border family as only he can, using the language we use in a way at once common-place and at the same time rich and transcendent. Family, pride, petty gossip, deep love. It's all there.

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