Book Review: Infinite Country

4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5) Infinite Country – Patricia Engel

I picked up this book because I am attending Patricia Engel’s session at the April 30th #Antiracistbookfest and I like to read as many of the contributor’s books ahead of time as I can so I have some context for the discussions/conversations. I enjoyed reading this novel so much that I finished it over a weekend! 

Engel tells the story of a Colombian family that has been separated by circumstance and life decisions. The story jumps between the daughter’s story, the love story of her parents, and the life experiences of her two siblings. Talia and her father are in Columbia trying to get to her mother and two siblings living in America. The journey is complicated by Talia being a dual-citizen of the US and Columbia breaking out of a Columbian juvenile detention center, her father not having legal status to immigrate to America, her mother and one sister residing in the USA undocumented, and her brother who was born in the United States and therefore being an American citizen. 

Talia (and her entire family’s) journey is wrought pain, fear, and an immense longing to be together despite the complicated nature of the family dynamics. Engle also illuminates the power dynamics and violence meted out by white people in the USA on immigrants and people of color and how that violence/power differential affects the everyday lives and decision-making of non-whites living in America. 

Engel tells a beautiful and complicated story with authenticity and honesty which makes it resonate with her readers. I thoroughly enjoyed this novel and would highly recommend it! 

Read on my friends!

-Haddi 

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