“Offers hope in the face of desperate odds” – ELLE Magazine, ELLE’s Most Anticipated Books of Summer 2020
“[D]isturbing and unforgettable memoir…This wrenching story brings to vivid life the plight of the many families separated at the U.S.-Mexico border.” – Publisher’s Weekly, STARRED REVIEW
“[The] haunting and eloquent…narrative of a Guatemalan woman's desperate search for a better life." -Kirkus, STARRED Review
PEOPLE Magazine Best Books of Summer 2020
TIME Magazine Best Books of Summer 2020
PARADE Best Books of Summer 2020
Compelling and urgently important, The Book of Rosy is the unforgettable story of one brave mother and her fight to save her family.
When Rosayra “Rosy” Pablo Cruz made the agonizing decision to seek asylum in the United States with two of her children, she knew the journey would be arduous, dangerous, and quite possibly deadly. But she had no choice: violence—from gangs, from crime, from spiraling chaos—was making daily life hell. Rosy knew her family’s one chance at survival was to flee Guatemala and go north.
After a brutal journey that left them dehydrated, exhausted, and nearly starved, Rosy and her two little boys arrived at the Arizona border. Almost immediately they were seized and forcibly separated by government officials under the Department of Homeland Security’s new “zero tolerance” policy. To her horror Rosy discovered that her flight to safety had only just begun.
In The Book of Rosy, with an unprecedented level of sharp detail and soulful intimacy, Rosy tells her story, aided by Julie Schwietert Collazo, founder of Immigrant Families Together, the grassroots organization that reunites mothers and children. She reveals the cruelty of the detention facilities, the excruciating pain of feeling her children ripped from her arms, the abiding faith that staved off despair—and the enduring friendship with Julie, which helped her navigate the darkness and the bottomless Orwellian bureaucracy.
A gripping account of the human cost of inhumane policies, The Book of Rosy is also a paean to the unbreakable will of people united by true love, a sense of justice, and hope for a better future.
About the Author
Rosayra Pablo Cruz es madre de cuatro hijos. Era dueña de una pequeña tienda de ropa en Guatemala antes de llegar a los Estados Unidos. Ahora que vive en Nueva York, es la copresidenta de la Asociación de Padres y Maestros de su hijo mayor y está activa en su iglesia y comunidad.
Julie Schwietert Collazo es una escritora, editora y traductora bilingue (inglés-español), y ex terapeuta de artes creativas. Ha co-escrito y editado un libro sobre el Papa Francisco, que ha sido traducido a más de una docena de idiomas y es un bestseller en Italia. Su trabajo ha aparecido en varios medios de comunicación, incluyendo Outside, Scientific American, Discover, Latina, The Guardian y Time, y ha contribuido a varios libros. Vive en Nueva York.
“[The] haunting and eloquent…narrative of a Guatemalan woman's desperate search for a better life."
— Kirkus (STARRED Review)
“A must read. Gripping, beautiful, heartbreaking and life-affirming. This intimate tale of one woman's journey across the border shines a light on the circumstances that have led thousands of women to risk all in order to give their children a safer, better life. It's a testament to the compassion of strangers and that in these troubled times, storytelling still has the power to increase our empathy and understanding. Reading this book will change you for the better.”
— J. Courtney Sullivan, New York Times bestselling author of Saints for All Occasions
“A deeply moving and very important book that tells the human story behind the tragedy of Central Americans seeking asylum in the US. This testament to the power of family, faith and community in the face of inhumane policies is gripping and eloquently and powerfully written. It ought to be read by everyone who claims to be an American. It ought to be read by everyone who is a citizen of the world.”
— John Perkins, New York Times bestselling Author of Confessions of an Economic Hitman and Touching the Jaguar
“I am forever astonished by Rosayra, for her unbelievable strength to share this story with us, while still healing from its traumas and fighting for asylum. The Book of Rosy is a brave recording of one of America's most shameful moments.”
— Christopher Soto, author of Sad Girl Poems
“This memoir is a handbook for everyday activism.”
“[I]nspiring and hopeful, The Book of Rosy offers an intimately detailed and personal account of two mothers’ determination and strength…A powerful, emotional perspective that demonstrates how one family’s immigrant experience can transcend inflicted pain and trauma in order to become an example of abundant generosity and love.”
— Shelf Awareness
“Offers an unflinching look at conditions in U.S. detention centers and a sobering reminder of the power of policy to change lives”