New year, new goals, new books to read. 

If you’re like me, maybe the new year means new reading goals. I’ve always been an addicted reader because I love learning more things. However, it is inevitable to fall into a reading block. It isn’t very nice if you ask me. But without a doubt, finding new books, different themes, and genres can make you pick up a book again.

Reading a book that comforts or makes me feel identified can help me get out of my block. If you are in your reader’s block era, here are five books by Latino authors, with stories maybe or maybe not similar to ours. And trust me, you will find a piece of yourself through the pages.

Olga Dies Dreaming by Xochitl Gonzalez

It’s 2017, and Olga and her brother, Pedro “Prieto” Acevedo, are bold-faced names in their hometown of New York. Prieto is a popular congressman representing their gentrifying Latinx neighborhood in Brooklyn while Olga is the tony wedding planner for Manhattan’s powerbrokers.

Despite their alluring public lives, behind closed doors things are far less rosy. Sure, Olga can orchestrate the love stories of the 1%, but she can’t seem to find her own… Until she meets Matteo, who forces her to confront the effects of long-held family secrets…

Twenty-seven years ago, their mother, Blanca, a Young Lord-turned-radical, abandoned her children to advance a militant political cause, leaving them to be raised by their grandmother. Now, with the winds of hurricane season, Blanca has come barreling back into their lives.

Set against the backdrop of New York City in the months surrounding the most devastating hurricane in Puerto Rico‘s history, Olga Dies Dreaming is a story that examines political corruption, familial strife and the very notion of the American dream–all while asking what it really means to weather a storm.

¡Ándale, Prieta! by Yasmin Ramirez

Ramírez’s coming-of-age memoir examines her upbringing in El Paso, Texas, returning after the death of her grandmother in order to process her grief and to better understand her through her mother and her sister. Throughout her journey, Ramírez conversationally reflects upon the non-traditional aspects of being part of a family of Mexican American women.

Expertly blending the lyrical prose of a gifted author with the down-to-earth, conversational remarks of a close friend, this debut memoir marks Ramírez as a talented new author to watch. Her honesty in self-reflection, especially about periods where she felt directionless, and her vivid depictions of a mother and grandmother that persevered through a lot of hard knocks, offers vulnerable solidarity to readers who’ve had hard knocks of their own.

Crying in the Bathroom: A Memoir by Erika L. Sánchez

Published before the Supreme Court reversed Roe v. Wade, New York Times bestseller and National Book Award finalist Erika L. Sánchez’s memoir is an account of her life growing up in a working-class Mexican immigrant household in Chicago, exploring her sexuality, religion and feminism and grappling with racism and colorism. She writes about how an abortion saved her life and candidly details her experiences dealing with suicidal thoughts and depression.

Solito by Javier Zamora

In his captivating memoir, poet Javier Zamora relates his migration journey from El Salvador to the U.S. as a young boy. Writing from his perspective at 9, he talks about traveling thousands of miles alone to Arizona to reconnect with his parents, who fled El Salvador years before after the country’s civil war.

Zamora recalls his experiences with the help of strangers along the way, including learning to raise himself and facing challenges from Border Patrol agents. “Solito” has been recognized as a New York Times Bestseller and as one of the 10 best books of the year by the New York Public Library and as one of the best books of the year by NPR, The Washington Post and Kirkus Reviews, among other publications.

A Ballad of Love and Glory by Reyna Grande

With A Ballad of Love and Glory, Reyna Grande employs her many storytelling gifts to paint a vivid and unforgettable portrait of the people caught up in the Mexican-American War. Grande brings the legend of the Saint Patrick’s Battalion to life in all its richness and humanity, along with a big cast of Mexican women patriots and vainglorious generals.


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Natalia Arreola
Natalia Arreola is a New Mexico State University graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Creative Writing with a minor in Psychology. She works at El Paso Inc. as Audience Development & Engagement Manger. Natalia has been working on different projects as an editor, including Chrysalis, The Papagayo Project, Memorias del Silencio, and more. Natalia’s goal is to get her master’s degree in either Publishing or Editing to apply to larger publishing companies. And maybe one day, she can publish her own book. Her passion has always been between books and writing to find a way to understand this world and life.