Infinite Country by Patricia Engel
Genre: Literary Fiction
Length: 208 pages
First Published: March 2, 2021
Named a Most Anticipated Book of 2021 from The Millions, O, The Oprah Magazine, Elle, Electric Literature, Lit Hub, AARP, Refinery29, BuzzFeed, Autostraddle, SheReads, Alma, and more.
I often wonder if we are living the wrong life in the wrong country.
Talia is being held at a correctional facility for adolescent girls in the forested mountains of Colombia after committing an impulsive act of violence that may or may not have been warranted. She urgently needs to get out and get back home to Bogotá, where her father and a plane ticket to the United States are waiting for her. If she misses her flight, she might also miss her chance to finally be reunited with her family in the north.
How this family came to occupy two different countries, two different worlds, comes into focus like twists of a kaleidoscope. We see Talia’s parents, Mauro and Elena, fall in love in a market stall as teenagers against a backdrop of civil war and social unrest. We see them leave Bogotá with their firstborn, Karina, in pursuit of safety and opportunity in the United States on a temporary visa, and we see the births of two more children, Nando and Talia, on American soil. We witness the decisions and indecisions that lead to Mauro’s deportation and the family’s splintering—the costs they’ve all been living with ever since.
About Patricia Engel
Patricia Engel is the winner of the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, the International Latino Book Award; and was a finalist for the Pen/Hemingway and Young Lions Fiction Awards, New York Times Notable Book, and winner of Colombias national book award. Visit author’s website→