Book Review

Hispanic Heritage Month – Read These Books to Celebrate

Hispanic Heritage Month Instagram Post in Bright Orange Bright Yellow Bold Patterns Style
Graphic from Canva for Hispanic Heritage Month

Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated every year from September 15th until October 15th. President Ronald Reagan expanded this from Hispanic Heritage Week, which began in 1968, to 30 days in 1988, according to became law on August 17, 1988. 

But why from September 15th to October 15th instead of all of September or all of October? September 15th is the independence day for El Salvador, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and Honduras. Also, Mexico’s and Chile’s independence days are September 16 and September 18. 

A national celebration of history, culture, and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors are from Mexico, the Caribbean, Central and South America, and Spain occurs during this month. And this year, I am celebrating by reading books written by Hispanic authors.

Books I’m Reading This Month

Books laying on black table top
Picture by Heidy De La Cruz

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How The Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents by Julia Alvarez

This book was published in 1991 and it’s Julia’s debut novel. The book is about four sisters from the Dominican Republic and their coming-of-age story in the United States. It was the first book of its kind during that period – the kind of book that provided a look into the bicultural lives of Hispanic immigrants in the United States. Since the book is loosely based on her own family, it did not sit well with them. Julia’s sisters were angry with her and her mom didn’t speak to her for years, Julia said.

For Brown Girls with Sharp Edges and Tender Hearts: A Love Letter To Women of Color by Prisca Dorcas Mojica Rodriguez

This book was published in 2021 also Prisca’s debut book. This book is about Prisca’s experiences growing up as an immigrant from Nicaragua in the United States and the challenges she faced. She writes about how powerful forces can affect women similar to her and what readers can do about it. 

I started reading Garcia Girls first and I’ll share a review on here.

List of books I suggest for Hispanic Heritage Month

I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erika L. Sanchez

The book is about Julia – she’s 15, almost 16, a child of Mexican immigrants, and her older sister recently had a tragic death. She is dealing with grief, the cultural pressure of her parenting wanting her to be the ‘perfect Mexican daughter’ – the role her sister had, and the constant clash between her and her parents, especially her mom. You can read my full review here

Erika is a daughter of Mexican immigrants and grew up in Ceciro, Illinois.

The Four Agreements and The Circle of Fire by Don Miguel Ruiz

The Four Agreements is a book about four simple agreements to live by. 

  1. Be impeccable with your word.
  2. Don’t take anything personally. 
  3. Don’t make assumptions.
  4. Always do your best. 

After reading this book I feel like my life changed, especially with not taking anything personally. I’ve read this book multiple times and always suggest this book!

The Circle of Fire 

This book is about helping us enter into a new and loving relationship with all of creation, ourselves, and others. Don Miguel Ruiz was born in Guadalajara, Mexico. He was the youngest of 13 children and both his parents were healers and practitioners of ancient Toltec traditions

An American Immigrant by Johanna Rojas

The book is about Melanie. She is a journalist who writes for Miami Herald and she’s on the brink of losing her job. She is assigned a story that takes her to her mom’s home country, Colombia, a place Melanie has never visited. On this trip, she discovers so much about herself, her culture, and her mom. This book is loosely based on Johanna’s mom’s experience of coming to the United States and her life in Colombia as well as Johanna’s experience growing up as a child of immigrants. You can read my full review here.

Words From The Heart by Heidy De La Cruz

Of course, I’m going to plug in my poetry book in this list! During a dark period of my life, I wrote these poems to best describe and put into words how I was feeling.

Here is one review from a reader: 

Heidy has a true gift: the way she writes is truly heartfelt. I recommend this book to anyone who is struggling with self-love. Learning how to accept and love themselves after the heartbreak that destroys their self-identity. – Amari 

What books would you add to this list to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month? 

With Love, Heidy

Is a personal development newsletter an interest of yours? With a little bit of poetry? A little of opinion pieces? And some faith-based encouragement? Sign up for my Substack newsletter, “Into My Thoughts.”


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