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Once Upon a Quinceanera: Coming of Age in the USA

Once Upon a Quinceanera: Coming of Age in the USA
Author: Julia Alvarez
ISBN 13: 9780452288300
ISBN 10: 452288304
Edition: Reprint
Publisher: Plume
Publication Date: 2008-07-29
Format: Paperback
Pages: 275
List Price: $16.00

A “phenomenal, indispensable” (USA Today) exploration of the Latina “sweet fifteen” celebration, by the bestselling author of How the García Girls Lost Their Accents

The quinceañera, a celebration of a Latina girl's fifteenth birthday, has become a uniquely American trend. This lavish party with ball gowns, multi-tiered cakes, limousines, and extravagant meals is often as costly as a prom or a wedding. But many Latina girls feel entitled to this rite of passage, marking a girl's entrance into womanhood, and expect no expense to be spared, even in working-class families. Acclaimed author Julia Alvarez explores the history and cultural significance of the “quince” in the United States, and the consequences of treating teens like princesses. Through her observations of a quince in Queens, interviews with other quince girls, and the memories of her own experience as a young immigrant, Alvarez presents a thoughtful and entertaining portrait of a rapidly growing multicultural phenomenon, and passionately emphasizes the importance of celebrating Latina womanhood.

Chicago Sun-Times

Though [Alvarez] brings a critical eye to long-held myths...each page is a love song to the cultural ties that bind generations of women from a diverse group of countries.