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Across the Wire: Life and Hard Times on the Mexican Border

Across the Wire: Life and Hard Times on the Mexican Border By Luis Alberto Urrea John Lueders-Booth Across the Wire Life and Hard Times on the Mexican Border Luis Alberto Urrea s Across the Wire offers a compelling and unprecedented look at what life is like for those refugees living on the Mexican side of the border a world that is only some twenty miles

  • Title: Across the Wire: Life and Hard Times on the Mexican Border
  • Author: Luis Alberto Urrea John Lueders-Booth
  • ISBN: 9780385425308
  • Page: 197
  • Format: Paperback
  • Across the Wire: Life and Hard Times on the Mexican Border By Luis Alberto Urrea John Lueders-Booth Luis Alberto Urrea s Across the Wire offers a compelling and unprecedented look at what life is like for those refugees living on the Mexican side of the border a world that is only some twenty miles from San Diego, but that few have seen Urrea gives us a compassionate and candid account of his work as a member and official translator of a crew of relief wo Luis Alberto Urrea s Across the Wire offers a compelling and unprecedented look at what life is like for those refugees living on the Mexican side of the border a world that is only some twenty miles from San Diego, but that few have seen Urrea gives us a compassionate and candid account of his work as a member and official translator of a crew of relief workers that provided aid to the many refugees hidden just behind the flashy tourist spots of Tijuana His account of the struggle of these people to survive amid abject poverty, unsanitary living conditions, and the legal and political chaos that reign in the Mexican borderlands explains without a doubt the reason so many are forced to make the dangerous and illegal journey across the wire into the United States More than just an expose, Across the Wire is a tribute to the tenacity of a people who have learned to survive against the most impossible odds, and returns to these forgotten people their pride and their identity.
    Across the Wire: Life and Hard Times on the Mexican Border By Luis Alberto Urrea John Lueders-Booth

    Across the Wire Life and Hard Times on the More than just an expose, Across the Wire is a tribute to the tenacity of a people who have learned to survive against the most impossible odds, and returns to Across the Wire Life and Hard Times on the Mexican Border Luis Alberto Urrea s Across the Wire offers a compelling and unprecedented look at what life is like for those refugees living on the Mexican side of the border a world that is only some twenty miles from San Diego, but that few have seen. Across the Wire by Luis Urrea More than just an expose, Across the Wire is a tribute to the tenacity of a people who have learned to survive against the most impossible odds, and returns to Across the Wire Calexico Last rowsWatch the video for Across the Wire from Calexico s Feast of Wire for free, and see the Calexico Across the Wire Lyrics Genius Lyrics Across the Wire Lyrics Alberto hits his brother on the Back of the head, looks to the north As he starts to get up His brother still sleepy Grumbles it s not light yet, if you want a

    • ↠ Across the Wire: Life and Hard Times on the Mexican Border ¹ Luis Alberto Urrea John Lueders-Booth
      197 Luis Alberto Urrea John Lueders-Booth

    One thought on “Across the Wire: Life and Hard Times on the Mexican Border

    1. Kurt Reichenbaugh on said:

      Started reading this morning and finished this afternoon Published in the early 90 s and told as a series of real stories, this book reports the lives of people living in and around Tijuana and the border between Mexico and California.

    2. Karimi on said:

      I had to use several of the chapters in this book for a social psychology essay I decided to read the entire book and was not disappointed I really enjoyed Urrea s writing style He mixes his personal experiences with in depth character analysis of the people he interacted with I think this book is necessary reading for anyone who lives in an American state near the border of Mexico This book gives a unique account of the lived experiences of Latinos living in the borderlands that is much to ofte [...]

    3. Tana on said:

      Luis Alberto Urrea gives readers a vivid description of what life is like for those living in the dirty, vermin infested, often violent dompes garbage dumps of Mexico I thought I knew hardship growing up, but after reading Urrea s tales of misery, I realized my life could have been worse I was blessed enough to be born on the right side of the border, a clueless Mexican American Yes, I learned all about my culture as far as music, food, language, holidays but I had no idea of the suffering of ma [...]

    4. Caroline on said:

      Urrea tells stories from his time spent working as a translator for missionaries in and around the Tijuana garbage dumps The author wasn t doing it for God, but for the people, as he got sucked into it by a charismatic man named Pastor Von One of Von s pep talks revolved around the unconscionable wealth in the United States Well, he d say to some unsuspecting gringo, you re probably not rich You probably don t even have a television Oh, you do You have three televisions One in each room Wow But [...]

    5. Lars Guthrie on said:

      Since my enthusiastic reception of Urrea s The Hummingbird s Daughter, my Dad has cheerfully assigned a couple of collection of essays by that author to me It s an assignment I have cheerfully met, although I can t say reading this one was always cheerful Just across the border in Tijuana, his home town, Urrea worked with evangelical missionairies to give aid to people living in the most severe kind of poverty the kind of poverty we associate with India or Africa, not somewhere next to San Diego [...]

    6. Patrick O'Neil on said:

      Mexican border towns are strange, confusing, and sometimes wonderful, and Luis Urrea takes us there His essays in Across the Wire, exemplify that jumble of emotions and experiences that make up a land caught between so many different dominating factors money, poverty, politics, and race, to name but a few With his elegant non judgmental style of writing Urrea portrays the residents of garbage dumps, forgotten barrios, shantytowns, and abandoned hillside houses filled with glue sniffers Some of t [...]

    7. Jenny on said:

      I had to read this for an university social work class While full of crass language and unpleasant stories, I found it full of important information that helped me to better understand a side of immigration that Americans should know I wouldn t want to read it again, but I will never forget some of the lessons I learned Many of Urrea s experiences are heartbreaking.

    8. Mano (Leslie) on said:

      A series of vignettes from this Tijuana born writer, shows a heartwrenching and often difficult to read portrayal of poverty and the struggle for life on the border.

    9. Whitaker on said:

      A really great book shows us how everything is great and worth to die for

    10. grundoon on said:

      It was inevitable that I d get around to this, having accidentally read the follow up a while back Life among the border dumps of Tijuana, vignettes of an almost unimaginable reality as recorded through the eyes of a charity worker This is unforgettable poverty, permitted dignity, related with both compassion and objectivity.

    11. Kirk Astroth on said:

      Another great book by Urrea about life along the border and the many sad stories of lives ruined and taken by violence and greed Urrea is a saint for working there in Tijuana to help people The chapter on his father s death is heart wrenching.

    12. Beckie on said:

      Interesting read I had to read this for a class and keep a journal of my thoughts as I read This was an easy read, but definitely got me thinking for my journal

    13. Jerry Withers on said:

      Across the Wire Life and Hard Times on the Mexican Border was published in 1993 and it is a journalistic collection of narratives that were observed by the author, Luis Alberto Urrea, from 1979 to 1992 in areas near the Mexican American border where he worked as a translator and helper for the missionaries Luis Alberto Urrea was born in Tijuana, Mexico where he grew up and gained his interest in homeless Mexican Americans He attended the University of California, San Diego, and earned an undergr [...]

    14. Maximiliano Hernandez on said:

      Across the Wire was basically plotted at Mexico s frontier nearest cities Tijuana, Ensenada, Tecate, Mexicali, ect The book is based on true life short stories of poor people that had experience a tremendously horror in their daily lives Its heartbreaking stories bring a sad atmosphere to the reader that make the book even better because the reader wants to read it as its going on Some of the main characters would be Luis Alberto Urrea, Negra, Mike,and the serranos This was Luis Alberto Urrea s [...]

    15. Tommy on said:

      While not quite as compelling as Urrea s later The Devil s Highway , this is still gripping writing At his best, Mr Urrea feels like non fiction s answer to Cormac McCarthy Using sparse, visual language, he creates imagery that cuts straight to the truth He is the son of an American mother and Mexican father, and he has seen the wire from both sides.No matter how you feel about the challenges that haunt the U.S Mexico border and I know that s an emotional, politically charged argument this book [...]

    16. Liz Murray on said:

      It s not easy to find words to review a book like this Urrea paints an honest and respectful portrait of the people who touch his life in the borderlands I ve recently spent time in South Africa working with a friend who runs a program in a township there If I didn t have that as a vague reference point I might have read this differently, or have been touched differently The lives Urrea portrays live a tougher life than the people I know in SA but there are some commonalities Another reviewer me [...]

    17. Nick on said:

      Luis Alberto Urrea looks unblinkingly at Tijuana in the 90s How one longs for a time when reading about the San Diego Tijuana border meant books like this, with its collection of stories of people living in enormous landfills, deep and enduring poverty, campaigns to do something about it and of course, this is Tijuana, which General Abelardo Rodriguez turned into a magnet for Californians seeking whatever was forbidden to them corruption That Tijuana was swallowed by the drug culture the Arellan [...]

    18. Susana Olague Trapani on said:

      Absolutely heart wrenching stories of life on the Mexican border, all of them tinged with what makes up life despair, hope, renewal, defeat For someone like me, it s a reminder of the various faces of Mexico, and how easily we can hide them behind our culture, geography, history, and the mask we want to present to the world An earlier work of Urrea s, it s not as gripping a narrative as The Devil s Highway A True Story, but you can see that the path toward that book started with the recounting o [...]

    19. Kate on said:

      This book will stay with me forever Urrea s writing is so concise and poignant that he conveys so much in such a slim book The chapter about his father is haunting It s interesting to read this after his new Fiction book, Into the Beautiful North, because you see its beginnings in Across the Wire character names, settings and themes No wonder Into the Beautiful North was so strong it was based on real expereinces NOT READ THIS DURING LUNCH Too many graphic descriptions of intestinal parasites an [...]

    20. Kristin on said:

      This book was a collection of essays written about the very poor in Tijuana I m sure someone has already reviewed it as an unflinching look at life on the Mexican American border, and I d have to agree Urrea doesn t leave out any lice, diarrhea, scabies, or other tough situations encountered during his time working with the people of Tijuana s colonias.The book as a whole felt a little choppy and jumpy, not as well written as it could have been I couldn t read it all at once, either, as sad and [...]

    21. Deborah on said:

      People who read this book need to understand that this book is going to be biased in the beginning the author explicitly states that this book is going to be his personal account about his experience of the border life in Tijuana people who want truth about the hardships these people face need to pick up this book and read it I see homeless children and have to ask myself where and how did these children end up on the streets This book is a very emotional account of those that have gone as far a [...]

    22. Barb on said:

      another great NF book by Urrea Stories not of those who cross the wire into the US, but those left behind, or those that cannot Living in barrios, hovels, garbage dumps Makes you rethink if you even remotely think you ever had it rough Urrea is so good at getting his characters on paper I wanted to feed each and every kid.take Negra home with me If there ever is to be one, Urrea s stories will be one of the catalysts that will help Americans recognize the true issues behind illegal immigration.

    23. Adam on said:

      In contrast to The Devil s Highway, Across the Wire is a series of vignettes rather than a traditional narrative In nearly every instance, it too presents a crushing story of the disasters that plague life lived right on the frontier between Mexico and the United States Unlike the Devil s Highway, however, Urrea does somewhat reporting and somewhat less moralizing The slight shift in emphasis gives this book a grittier, less polished feel, which I think makes it a stronger read overall Easier t [...]

    24. KDUNK on said:

      This is a fantastic book Urrea is a genius and I first heard his stories read on NPR s This American Life and was totally sold The book is hard to get through in an emotional sense It is very graphic and full of unpleasant details which are not for those with a weak stomach Having traveled some in Mexico I really enjoy all the details Urrea portrays through words and how he does it Feels like you are really there I highly recommend the book if the subject interests you.

    25. Melissa on said:

      This was a tough book to read but very well done It takes place in Tijuana when the author was working with a religious aid group He starts out by saying Poverty is personal it smells and it shocks and it invades your space I liked how he took one person s story for each chapter He made it personal and you really felt for these people I had just read Into the Beautiful North and I saw how he took his real experiences and put them into that book Also very good.

    26. Jill Boyd on said:

      I don t recommend this book as the stories are horrifying Yes, I wonder why I finished it Because it was a compelling read about life over the border in the garbage dumps of BC It is an expose of man s utter depravity and one author s cynical views of it The book will stay with me in the same way as a string of cuss words or a depressing life event.

    27. patty on said:

      Horrific, hard boiled and sad Somewhat dated, as life in 2013 on the mexican border, drug wars, etc must be far worse hard to imagine how that could be now, than the horrors that comprise this book Not the type of book you would read while sitting down to a meal In fact, I learned that the hard way.Look forward to reading recent works by this writer.

    28. Thing Two on said:

      Luis Urrea, author of the fascinating The Devil s Highway, published a collection of essays for the San Diego Reader about his experiences as a relief worker in the late 70s early 80s for a Protestant organization providing assistance to the residents of the Tijuana city dump His experiences explain why people opt to cross the wire and enter the US illegally.

    29. Kim on said:

      Hard to give than 3 stars to a book that was depressing and made me worry that my defenses of Mexico all these years were made out of naivete and wishful thinking than knowledge But it is Urrea, so the writing is good not as powerful as in Devil s Highway this is an earlier book , and it s definitely eye opening re poverty, corruption, plain ole bad people and also good ones.

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