This historical novel is based on Urrea's real great-aunt Teresita, who had healing powers and was acclaimed as a saint. Urrea has researched historical accounts and family records for years to get an accurate story.
To the very end, The Hummingbird's Daughter is a book of surprises and savory treasures. Urrea's much-praised recent work, The Devil's Highway , was a journalistic re-creation of the deaths of 14 Mexicans who crossed illegally into the U.S. southern desert in 2001. He has loosened his expressive reportorial skills to write lyrical fiction, and we can only be grateful.