Saturday, August 1, 2009

White Bread Competition Jo Ann Yolanda Hernandez

White Bread Competition by Jo Ann Yolanda Hernandez. This book came to my attention thanks to a recent giveaway Susan had at Color Online , the winners. White Bread Competition was great. Its the 90's in San Antonio, Texas, Luz will be the first Latina to represent her state in the national spelling bee. White Bread Competition is made up of 10 interlinked stories that lead up to the big event. One of my favorite stories was Mixing the Ingredients. Luz's grandmother Aura, tells her something bad will happen if she enters the spelling bee. Rosaura confronts her mother for telling Luz such hurtful things. This story reads like a song, the movement is beautiful. Hernandez brings the reader closer to mother and daughter. The author does an excellent job of drawing all the characters, making the reader care. Being the first is never easy, someone says Luz cheated.
There is so much to love about White Bread Competition.

Now I will share (this is why I read outside of myself) passages

Rosaura is an artist and is showing at a local gallery. A White woman who's daughter lost to Luz puts down Rosaura's art and ask when her family immigrated to America?

"My family became Americans when Texas was annexed just after my great great grandmother's birthday. We had already been living on this land for several decades before the white people, your people stole this country from us." "I'm fifth generation American. What generation are you?"

Aura would spend hours on her feet making authentic tortillas while people watched and pointed
I saw a movie the other day. One of those westerns. You know what I mean, where all the good cowboys are gringos and are going to save the poor Mexican farmers. When they ride into town, there's always some fat mexicana sitting alongside the road with a dozen little children running around her, making tortillas on a hot rock. Don't matter what town or how many times they ride in, she's sitting there cooking those damn tortillas with that brood of kids." Carmen steps into her high heels and says, "Let's hope the boss doesn't see that movie. He'll have us cooking on a hot rock to make the place more authentic."

White Bread Competition reminded me of another book I loved The Tequila Worm by Viola Canales


Color Online said...

Fantastic! See this is what I hope for for Color Online: we introduce one another to writers new to us and we discover reads we love.

Please link this to Color Me Brown.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for your review. I appreciate your kind words and your support. I hope you also take a moment and read The Throwaway Piece which came out 2007. Thank you so much.
Jo Ann Hernandez
BronzeWord1 AT yahoo DOT com
BronzeWord Latino Authors

Doret said...

I will Susan, and I am happy you had that contest because I found a great book.

Thank you so much for stopping by Jo Ann. I really enjoyed White Bread Competition so I do want to read Throwaway Piece.

MissA said...

I so want to read this book! thanks fro the review.
Oh and I loved the Tequila Worm!! :)

Zetta said...

That last quote is hilarious--and I totally identify with the "Where are you from/when did you get here?" question, which white Canadians ask me all the time...I love being able to say, "1820, how about you?"