Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book


Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Julia Alvarez  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Fiction History Non-Fiction Poetry

Audience: Adult; Young Adult; Children;

Born: 1950 in New York City, NY


-- Facebook -- https://www.facebook.com/authorjuliaalvarez
-- Website -- http://www.juliaalvarez.com/
-- Julia Alvarez on WorldCat -- http://www.worldcat.org/search?q=julia+alvarez


Illinois Connection

Alvarez was an Assistant Professor in the English Department at the University of Illinois in Urbana from 1985 - 1988. While there, she taught beginning and advanced fiction and poetry workshops as well as courses on women's studies and minority/ethnic literature.

Biographical and Professional Information

Julia Alvarez is an author, a poet, novelist, and essayist. Born in New York, she spent the first ten years of her childhood in the Dominican Republic. A few years after moving back to the United States, Alvarez started attending Abbot Academy; graduating in 1967. From there, she attended Connecticut College from 1967 to 1969 and then transferred to Middlebury College, where she obtained her Bachelor of Arts degree, summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa in 1971. She then went on to Syracuse University where she received her master's in 1975.Alvarez then took a position as a writer-in-residence for the Kentucky Arts Commission. She traveled throughout the state visiting elementary schools, high schools, colleges and communities, conducting writing workshops and giving readings. She attributes these years with providing her a deeper understanding of America and helping her realize her passion for teaching. After her work in Kentucky, she extended her educational endeavors to California, Delaware, North Carolina, Massachusetts, Washington, D.C., and Illinois.Today, Alvarez is regarded as one of the most critically and commercially successful Latina writers of her time. She currently resides in Champlain Valley, Vermont.


Awards

Return to Sender


-- Pura Belpre Award, American Library Association, 2010
-- Americas Award for Children and Young Adult's Literature, National Consortium for Latin American Studies Program, 2010
-- Finalist, YALSA Award, American Library Association

In the Time of Butterflies


-- ''The Big Read'' Book Selection, National Endowment for the Arts
-- One of 21 Classics for the 21st Century, New York Libraries

How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents


-- PEN Oakland/Josephine Miles Literary Award, 1991
-- One of 21 Classics for the 21st Century, New York Libraries
-- ''The Big Read'' Book Selection, National Endowment for the Arts, 2010

YO!


-- Notable Book, American Library Association, 1998

One Upon a Quinceaera


-- Finalist, National Book Critics Circle Award, 2008

How Ta Lola Came to Visit Stay


-- Little Read Book Selection, Lenoir-Rhyne University, Hickory, North Carolina, 2010

How Ta Lola Learned to Teach


-- Back-to-School Reading list, The Horn Book, 2013
-- Best of the Best List, Chicago Public Library, 2010
-- Winter 2011 Kids' Indie Next List, IndieBound

Before We Were Free


-- Best Book, American Library Association, 2002
-- Pura Belpre Award, American Library Association, 2002

The Best Gift of All


-- Honorable Mention, Amricas Award for Children's and Young Adult Literature, 2009 '''Body of Work

Speaking Engagements

Speaking Engagement Availability (Yes)

Selected Titles At Your Library

A cafecito story /
ISBN: 1931498067. OCLC Number: 49355878

. .

A man on holiday in the Dominican Republic learns about how coffee is grown and traded, which inspires him to live more attuned to the land.

A gift of gracias :
ISBN: 0375824251. OCLC Number: 56955975

Knopf :. .

Maria's family is almost forced to leave their farm on the new island colony, until a mysterious lady appears in Maria's dream.

A wedding in Haiti :
ISBN: 9781616201302. OCLC Number: 753634660

Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill,. .

In this book the author talks about three of her most personal relationships, with her parents, with her husband, and with a young Haitian boy known as Piti. A teenager when she and her husband, Bill, first met him in 2001, Piti crossed the border into the Dominican Republic to find work. Impressed by his courage, charmed by his smile, the author has over the years come to think of him as a son, even promising to be at his wedding someday. When Piti calls in 2009, her promise is tested. To the author, much admired for her ability to lead readers deep inside her native Dominican culture, Haiti is like a sister I've never gotten to know. Here she takes us on a journey into experiences that challenge our way of thinking about history and how it can be reimagined when people from two countries, traditional enemies and strangers, become friends. We follow her across the border into Haiti, once the richest of all the French colonies and now teeters on the edge of the abyss, first for the celebration of a wedding and a year later to find Piti's loved ones in the devastation of the earthquake. A strong message is packed inside this story, this time about the nature of poverty and of wealth, of human love and of human frailty, of history and of the way we live now.

A wedding in Haiti :
ISBN: 1616202807. OCLC Number: 793207143

Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill,. .

The popular author talks about three of her most personal relationships--with her parents, with her husband, and with a young Haitian boy known as Piti.

Before we were free
ISBN: 1549012657. OCLC Number: 947074751

. .

In the early 1960s in the Dominican Republic, twelve-year-old Anita learns that her family is involved in the underground movement to end the bloody rule of the dictator, General Trujillo.

Before we were free /
ISBN: 044023784X. OCLC Number: 48429165

A. Knopf,. .

In the early 1960s in the Dominican Republic, twelve-year-old Anita learns that her family is involved in the underground movement to end the bloody rule of the dictator, General Trujillo.

El mejor regalo del mundo :
ISBN: 9781631138690. OCLC Number: 1004225988

. .

La Vieja Belén es un personaje del folclor dominicano que llega a las páginas de este libro, de la mano de la autora Julia Alvarez, para enseñarlesa lectores de todas las edades y de cualquier rincón del mundo, una hermosa lección sobre la generosidad y las prioridades de la vida...

El mejor regalo del mundo :
ISBN: 1622631498. OCLC Number: 244764516

. .

Retellling of the Dominican folk character, La Vieja Belén, who leaves gifts for poor children a week after the Feast of the Epiphany.

Finding miracles
ISBN: 039955548X. OCLC Number: 947074750

. .

Fifteen-year-old Milly Kaufman is an average American teenager until Pablo, a new student at her school, inspires her to search for her birth family in his native country.

Finding miracles /
ISBN: 0553494066. OCLC Number: 68964739

Laurel-Leaf Books,. .

Fifteen-year-old Milly Kaufman is an average American teenager until Pablo, a new student at her school, inspires her to search for her birth family in his native country.

Homecoming
ISBN: 0394538552. OCLC Number: 10483901

. .

Homecoming :
ISBN: 0452275679. OCLC Number: 33245219

. .

Long before her award-winning novel, How the García Girls Lost Their Accents, and In the Time of the Butterflies, Julia Alvarez was writing poetry that gave a distinctive voice to the Latina woman - and helped give to American letters a vibrant new literary form. Homecoming was Alvarez's first published collection of poetry, a work of great subtlety and power in which the young poet returned to her old-world childhood in the Dominican Republic. Now this revised and expanded edition adds thirteen new poems. These more recent writings are still deeply autobiographical in nature, but written with the edgier, more knowing tone of a woman who has seen, and survived, more of life. Wonderfully lucid and engaging, toned with deep emotionality and a wry observation of life, the poems of Julia Alvarez stand next to her fiction to both delight us and give us lessons in living and loving.

How the García girls lost their accents
ISBN: 9781616200985. OCLC Number: 828736926

. .

In the 1960s, political tension forces the García family away from Santo Domingo and towards the Bronx. The sisters all hit their strides in America, adapting and thriving despite cultural differences, language barriers, and prejudice. But Mami and Papi are more traditional, and they have far more difficulty adjusting to their new country. Making matters worse, the girls--frequently embarrassed by their parents--find ways to rebel against them.

How the García girls lost their accents /
ISBN: 156512975X. OCLC Number: 22450948

Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill,. .

In the 1960s, political tension forces the García family away from Santo Domingo and towards the Bronx. The sisters all hit their strides in America, adapting and thriving despite cultural differences, language barriers, and prejudice. But Mami and Papi are more traditional, and they have far more difficulty adjusting to their new country. Making matters worse, the girls--frequently embarrassed by their parents--find ways to rebel against them.

How Tía Lola came to visit stay
ISBN: 9780736794107. OCLC Number: 814066214

Zaner-Bloser,. .

Although ten-year-old Miguel is at first embarrassed by his colorful great aunt, Tia Lola, when she comes to Vermont from the Dominican Republic to stay with his mother, his sister, and him after his parents' divorce, he learns to love her.

How Tía Lola came to visit stay /
ISBN: 0440418704. OCLC Number: 50587198

. .

Although ten-year-old Miguel is at first embarrassed by his colorful aunt, Tía Lola, when she comes to Vermont from the Dominican Republic to stay with his mother, his sister, and him after his parents' divorce, he learns to love her. Moving to Vermont after his parents split, Miguel has plenty to worry about. Tia Lola, his quirky, "carismatica, " and maybe magical aunt makes his life even more unpredictable when she arrives from the Dominican Republic to help out his Mami.

How Tía Lola ended up starting over
ISBN: 9780375969140. OCLC Number: 694394307

Alfred A. Knopf,. .

Worried that Papa Espada cannot find a job, Tía Lola, Juanita, Miguel, and the Sword sisters decide to start a bed and breakfast at Colonel Charlebois's Vermont house.

How Tía Lola learned to teach
ISBN: 9780375895845. OCLC Number: 502029816

Alfred A. Knopf,. .

Juanita and Miguel's great aunt, Tía Lola, comes from the Dominican Republic to help take care of them after their parents divorce, and soon she is so involved in their small Vermont community that when her visa expires, the whole town turns out to support her.

How Tía Lola saved the summer /
ISBN: 0375866876. OCLC Number: 747527860

. .

When three girls and their father visit for a week in the summer, it takes Tía Lola to make Miguel forget his unhappiness at the absence of any boys and embrace the adventures that ensue.

How T́́ía Lola saved the summer
ISBN: 9780375897665. OCLC Number: 650019280

Alfred A. Knopf,. .

When three girls and their father visit for a week in the summer, it takes T́́ía Lola to make Miguel forget his unhappiness at the absence of any boys and embrace the adventures that ensue.

In the name of Salomé :
ISBN: 9781616201036. OCLC Number: 300741674

Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill,. .

A sweeping novel spanning 100 years & the lives of a heroic mother & daughter; inspired by real events. Annotation. In her most ambitious work since In the Time of Butterflies, Julia Alvarez tells the story of a woman whose poetry inspired one Caribbean revolution and of her daughter whose dedication to teaching strengthened another. Camila Henriquez Urena is about to retire from her longtime job teaching Spanish at Vassar College. Only now as she sorts through family papers does she begin to know the woman behind the legend of her mother, the revered Salome Urena, who died when Camila was three. In stark contrast to Salome, who became the Dominican Republic's national poet at the age of seventeen, Camila has spent most of her life trying not to offend anybody. Her mother dedicated her life to educating young women to give them voice in their turbulent new nation; Camila has spent her life quietly and anonymously teaching the Spanish pluperfect to upper-class American girls with no notion of revolution, no knowledge of Salome Urena. Now, in 1960, Camila must choose a final destination for herself. Where will she spend the rest of her days? News of the revolution in Cuba mirrors her own internal upheaval. In the process of deciding her future, Camila uncovers the truth of her mother's tragic personal life and, finally, finds a place for her own passion and commitment. Julia Alvarez has won a large and devoted audience by brilliantly illuminating the history of modern Caribbean America through the personal stories of its people. As a Latina, as a poet and novelist, and as a university professor, Julia Alvarez brings her own experience to this exquisite story.

In the name of Salomé :
ISBN: 0452282438. OCLC Number: 43526884

Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill,. .

A sweeping novel spanning 100 years & the lives of a heroic mother & daughter; inspired by real events. Annotation. In her most ambitious work since In the Time of Butterflies, Julia Alvarez tells the story of a woman whose poetry inspired one Caribbean revolution and of her daughter whose dedication to teaching strengthened another. Camila Henriquez Urena is about to retire from her longtime job teaching Spanish at Vassar College. Only now as she sorts through family papers does she begin to know the woman behind the legend of her mother, the revered Salome Urena, who died when Camila was three. In stark contrast to Salome, who became the Dominican Republic's national poet at the age of seventeen, Camila has spent most of her life trying not to offend anybody. Her mother dedicated her life to educating young women to give them voice in their turbulent new nation; Camila has spent her life quietly and anonymously teaching the Spanish pluperfect to upper-class American girls with no notion of revolution, no knowledge of Salome Urena. Now, in 1960, Camila must choose a final destination for herself. Where will she spend the rest of her days? News of the revolution in Cuba mirrors her own internal upheaval. In the process of deciding her future, Camila uncovers the truth of her mother's tragic personal life and, finally, finds a place for her own passion and commitment. Julia Alvarez has won a large and devoted audience by brilliantly illuminating the history of modern Caribbean America through the personal stories of its people. As a Latina, as a poet and novelist, and as a university professor, Julia Alvarez brings her own experience to this exquisite story.

In the time of the butterflies
ISBN: 9781616200992. OCLC Number: 828736923

Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill,. .

It is November 25, 1960, and three beautiful sisters have been found near their wrecked Jeep at the bottom of a 150-foot cliff on the north coast of the Dominican Republic. The official state newspaper reports their deaths as accidental. It does not mention that a fourth sister lives. Nor does it explain that the sisters were among the leading opponents of Gen. Rafael Leonidas Trujillo's dictatorship. It doesn't have to. Everybody knows of Las Mariposas--The Butterflies. In this extraordinary novel, the voices of all four sisters--Minerva, Patria, Maria Teresa, and the survivor, Dede--speak across the decades to tell their own stories, from hair ribbons and secret crushes to gunrunning and prison torture, and to describe the everyday horrors of life under Trujillo's rule. Through the art and magic of Julia Alvarez's imagination, the martyred Butterflies live again in this novel of courage and love, and the human cost of political oppression.

In the time of the butterflies /
ISBN: 1565129768. OCLC Number: 30319222

Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill,. .

The life and death of three revolutionary sisters in the Dominican Republic, told by a surviving fourth. One by one the Mirabal Sisters, as they were known, join the opposition to the Trujillo dictatorship in the 1950s, suffering imprisonment and torture while their men watch powerless. They are released, then one night their jeep is ambushed. A story based on real events by the author of How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents.

Once upon a quinceanera :
ISBN: 9781101213407. OCLC Number: 883294585

Plume,. .

Finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, a phenomenal, indispensable (USA Today) exploration of the Latina sweet fifteen celebration, by the bestselling author of How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents and In the Time of Butterflies The quinceaNera, 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.

Once upon a quinceañera :
ISBN: 0452288304. OCLC Number: 183268060

. .

The quinceañera, the fifteenth birthday celebration for a Latina girl, is quickly becoming an American event. This legendary party is a sight to behold: lavish ball gowns, extravagant catered meals, DJs, limousines, and multi-tiered cakes. The must-haves for a "quince" are becoming as numerous and costly as a prom or wedding. And yet, this elaborate ritual also hearkens back to traditions from native countries and communities, offering young Latinas a chance to connect with their heritage. Writer Alvarez explores this celebration that brings a Latina girl into womanhood, attending the quince of a young woman in Queens, and weaving in interviews with other quince girls, her own memories of coming of age as an immigrant, and the history of the custom itself. The result is an enlightening, accessible, and entertaining portrait of contemporary Latino culture.--From publisher description.

Power of experience :
ISBN: 1402748876. OCLC Number: 173092317

Sterling,. .

What is the value of a life deeply lived? Can fragments from the past help you navigate the future? What good is wisdom in a world bewitched by ephemera? Some of our best writers over 50 tackle these and other questions in this honest, hard-hitting collection about the search for meaning in the second half of life. In moving works of self-discovery, they illuminate the fine art of growing up and the power of experience to transform your life--Publisher website (May 2008).

Return to sender
ISBN: 9780375851230. OCLC Number: 226357648

Alfred A. Knopf,. .

After his family hires migrant Mexican workers to help save their Vermont farm from foreclosure, eleven-year-old Tyler befriends the oldest daughter, but when he discovers they may not be in the country legally, he realizes that real friendship knows no borders.

Saving the world :
ISBN: 9781616201029. OCLC Number: 656993852

Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill,. .

Alma Heubner's husband, Richard, goes to the Dominican Republic to help eradicate AIDS, while Alma, a bestselling Latina writer, stays at home in Vermont to work on a story about a real, ill-fated 19th-century expedition chaperoned by Doña Isabel Sendales y Gómez, the spinster director of a Spanish orphanage who agrees to vaccinate 20 of her charges with cowpox and bring them from Spain to Central America to prevent future smallpox epidemics. While the leader of the anti-smallpox expedition, Dr. Francisco Balmis, and Richard see their missions collapse in defeat, Doña Isabel and Alma surmount their personal depressions to find inner strength.--Publishers Weekly.

Saving the world :
ISBN: 1565125584. OCLC Number: 61362219

Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill,. .

"Alma Heubner's husband, Richard, goes to the Dominican Republic to help eradicate AIDS, while Alma, a bestselling Latina writer, stays at home in Vermont to work on a story about a real, ill-fated 19th-century expedition chaperoned by Doña Isabel Sendales y Gómez, the spinster director of a Spanish orphanage who agrees to vaccinate 20 of her charges with cowpox and bring them from Spain to Central America to prevent future smallpox epidemics. While the leader of the anti-smallpox expedition, Dr. Francisco Balmis, and Richard see their missions collapse in defeat, Doña Isabel and Alma surmount their personal depressions to find inner strength."--Publishers Weekly.

Something to declare :
ISBN: 161620558X. OCLC Number: 893017588

Algonquin Of Chapel Hill,. .

The other side =
ISBN: 0525939229. OCLC Number: 31605612

Dutton,. .

A collection of poems written in English by a Hispanic American woman, reflecting her experiences as a young girl and as a middle-aged woman. The collection includes the twenty-one-part title poem El Otro Lado which deals with the poet's return to her native Dominican Republic.

The secret footprints /
ISBN: 0440417473. OCLC Number: 50952978

Dell Dragonfly Books,. .

A story based on Dominican folklore, about the ciguapas, a tribe of beautiful underwater people whose feet are attached backwards, with their toes pointing in the direction from which they have come.

The Secret Footprints.
ISBN: 9781448783472. OCLC Number: 709669154

Paw Prints. .

The woman I kept to myself :
ISBN: 9781616200749. OCLC Number: 656465218

Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill,. .

The works of this award-winning poet and novelist are rich with the language and influences of two cultures: those of the Dominican Republic of her childhood and the America of her youth and adulthood. They have shaped her writing just as they have shaped her life. In these seventy-five autobiographical poems, Alvarez?s clear voice sings out in every line. Here, in the middle of her life, she looks back as a way of understanding and celebrating the woman she has become.

The woman I kept to myself :
ISBN: 1616200723. OCLC Number: 698912202

Algonquin Books Of Chapel Hill,. .

Seventy-five autobiographical poems by Dominican American author Julia Alvarez.

Tía Lola stories
ISBN: 9780307707222. OCLC Number: 502032769

. .

How Tía Lola came to (visit) stay: Although ten-year-old Miguel is at first embarrassed by his colorful great aunt, Tia Lola, when she comes to Vermont from the Dominican Republic to stay with his mother, his sister, and him after his parents' divorce, he learns to love her.

Where do they go? /
ISBN: 1609806700. OCLC Number: 965544604

. .

Children wonder what happens to their loved ones after death.

Yo! /
ISBN: 0452279186. OCLC Number: 34798218

Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill,. .

The American odyssey of Yo, a Dominican woman writer whose family arrived in the U.S. as refugees from a dictatorship. The novel follows her youth, with its energy and optimism, and the setbacks as she grows older, including two divorces.

YO!.
ISBN: 1616209496. OCLC Number: 1055683248

ALGONQUIN OF CHAPEL HILL,. .