Charis is proud to welcome Marisel Vera, author of The Taste of Sugar in partnership with Agnes Scott College's Latinx Heritage Month Celebration.
It is 1898, and groups of starving Puerto Ricans, los hambrientos, roam the parched countryside and dusty towns begging for food. Under the yoke of Spanish oppression, the Caribbean island is forced to prepare to wage war with the United States. Up in the mountainous coffee region of Utuado, Vicente Vega and Valentina Sanchez labor to keep their small farm from the creditors. When the Spanish-American War and the great San Ciriaco Hurricane of 1899 bring devastating upheaval, the young couple is lured, along with thousands of other puertorriqueños, to the sugar plantations of Hawaii—another US territory—where they are confronted by the hollowness of America’s promises of prosperity. Writing in the tradition of great Latin American storytelling, Marisel Vera’s The Taste of Sugar is an unforgettable novel of love and endurance, and a timeless portrait of the reasons we leave home.
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Washington Post – 50 Notable Works of Fiction in 2020 • NBC News – 12 Best Latino Books of 2020 • "Enthralling. . . . A masterful work of historical fiction that traces monumental economic and political currents. . . . [A] Latino Grapes of Wrath." – Ron Charles, The Washington Post
A passionate story of love and hope that has "everything you want in a novel—flawed, complicated characters, lush descriptions, breathtaking plot, and a fierce beating heart" (Tayari Jones, New York Times bestselling author of An American Marriage).
In a small town in Puerto Rico, Felicidad Hidalgo spends her days serving busybodies in her aunt's