This first novel written in the 1930s by the dean of Mexican-American folklore charts the coming of age of a young Mexican American on the Texas-Mexico border against the background of guerrilla warfare, banditry, land grabs, abuses by the Texas Rangers and the overpowering pressures to disappear into the American melting pot.  Amazon

This book, in my opinion, is a  must read for every person living in South Texas, and especially in the Rio Grande Valley. The story takes place in Brownsville, Texas, and it is written in beautiful prose drawing you with every sentence into the conflicting life of George Washington Gomez. Disappearing into America’s melting pot was not an option for Mexican Americans in 1930s Brownsville. The politics of the time seemed too familiar to me – have things changed?

This book takes us on a journey of understanding the why’s and what’s of Mexican American heritage. It gives us a window into our own struggles and our own fears. Americo Paredes takes us on a journey of discovery of our own self.

The book is also available in Spanish.