"There is so much out there that talks about either the pregnant teenager or the local gang member or the consumerist-backbiting-after-the-man Latina," says Cardinal, who lives in Morrisville, Vt. She is Puerto Rican and Swedish, similar to Leni O'Malley-Diaz, the punk rocker rebel in the book who tries to come to terms with her Puerto Rican-Irish heritage. "We didn't feel they represented our stories."To read more about the book, the authors, and the great reviews they've been receiving, visit sisterchicas.com.
"We wanted to hold up a mirror for other Latinas to see themselves outside the stereotypes," says Alvarado, who is a first-generation Chicana in Chicago, like the character Graciela. "This was a bridge, a way for others to understand our culture. It's not just the hype you see in the news about who is crossing the border. The actual relationship between the three young women is the crux of the novel."
Chick Lit Con Carne
This spring, the New American Library/Penguin list included a between-cultures YA novel called Sister Chicas, a collaboration between authors Ann Hagman Cardinal, Lisa Alvarado, and Jane Alberdeston Coralin. The Boston Globe reports today on the vision behind the book: