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Prayers for the Stolen

by Jennifer Clement

It’s hard to imagine what it must be like to be young and poor and growing up in a Mexico which regards young women as commodities to be traded. However, this book took me right there whether I wanted or imagined it or not. I was gripped from start to finish.

Extract

This is where we are proud to be the angriest and meanest people in the world, Mother said.

When I was born, my mother announced to her neighbors and people in the market that a boy had been born.

Thank God a boy was born! She said.

Yes, thank God and the Virgin Mary, everyone answered even though no one was fooled. On our mountain only boys were born, and some of them turned into girls around the age of eleven. Then these boys had to turn into ugly girls who sometimes had to hide in holes in the ground.

We were like rabbits that hid when there was a hungry stray dog in the field, a dog that cannot close its mouth, and its tongue already tastes their fur. A rabbit stomps its back leg and this danger warning travels through the ground and alerts the other rabbits in the warren. In our area a warning was impossible since we all lived scattered and too far apart from each other.

Parallels

The People of Forever are not Afraid by Shani Boianju
Pomegranite Sky by Louise Soraya Black
 

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