Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Reading Rats: Pocho

Okay, so here’s the deal. I am going to read 100 books this year. It’s part of my new years resolution. I ended up writing a whole list of things for my resolution, which I am now regretting. But it’s down on paper, in print, on the fridge, so I have to stick with it. There’s something about typing things out, it’s so much more official! If I had just scratched my resolutions out on a little scrap of paper, I could have thrown it in the trash just as easily. But you see, I knew this about myself, so I typed it up. Then I put it on the fridge. There’s something about putting something on the fridge that validates it even more. I have to keep buying more magnets for my fridge, because I never pull things off of it. Once it’s on the fridge, it’s legit. So anyways, back to the books. I’m doing okay so far with a whopping four out of one hundred. Yeah. 
As you may know, I have some reading hindrances named Cathy and Lyra. Speaking of which, Cathy has a little tumor, poor dear. It’s still very small, a little bigger than a pea. It doesn't seem to be bugging her too much yet, and I’m going to take her to the vet to get it removed before it does. She should be getting surgery in two weeks, so keep her in your thoughts!  I’m sure she’ll pull through just fine; she’s a tenacious little one! But back to the book. The rats seemed to approve, for they jumped up on it a lot when Mommy was trying to read! So, it gets a vote from them!
The first book I read this year was Pocho by Jose Antonio Villareal. This book is part of the “broadening” aspect of my new years resolution. I also may have had to read it for school. It still counts. Anyhoo, it was a pretty good book. I don’t think I’ll read it again, but for anyone wanting to learn more about the Mexican-American history, this is a must!
This is a Pre-Chicano/a text, taking place in the early 1900s. In the period of Americanization (1920-1965), Mexican Americans moved away from their culture and language. They became Pochos to their families- speaking English, and possibly losing some or all of their Spanish. The novel follows the early life of on Richard Rubio, who falls into this category. The novel starts off with Richards’s father, Juan and parts of his life in Mexico. Juan falls into the traditional role of the Corrido Hero. Richard is everything a Corrido Hero is not. He is an individual and he moves away from his culture. This clash puts Richard at odds with not only his Father, but the rest of his family as well. In Pocho, Both Richard and his family are influenced by Americanization. Richard especially finds himself somewhere in-between being an American and a Mexican.

I’ll leave it at that, wouldn't want to spoil the end! And I’ll get more reviews up soon!

Books Read In 2013

1.      Pocho - Jose Antonio Villareal
2.      Do You Speak American? – Robert MacNeil
3.      Hunger of Memory – Richard Rodriguez
4.      So Far From God – Ana Castillo

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