Reyna Grande previews new novel at City College

Andrea Morin

A packed auditorium, more than 100 students, welcomed award-winning author Reyna Grande to City College on Nov. 15.

She discussed “The Distance Between Us,” published in 2012,  her memoir of her experiences as an undocumented immigrant. The book tells the story of her life since leaving her native Mexico at the age of four with her parents until her first days at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Grande also read an abstract of the as-yet untitled sequel to that book, scheduled to be released in 2018. The sequel continues Grande’s story after she graduates from college and struggles to connect with her broken family.

The author shared a blog post on the recent election.

“We witnessed at a national level what happens on a daily basis to women in the workplace—we lose to men who are less qualified than us,” said Grande.

When the reading was done, students had the opportunity to ask the author questions about the book and her life. Afterwards, many people lined up to get their books signed by the author.

Since its release, the book has touched many people who have been through similar situations. It is used as the main reading source for students taking English 49 on campus.

The session ended on a hopeful note from the author.

“Now more than ever, let us continue fighting for social justice, for a world without borders, for our right to create art, for our voices to be heard. It is through our stories that we will build bridges and tear down walls.”