One of the themes/topics of nearly every Hispanic/Latine based or centered media in the United States is always immigration. It is understandable, of course. Immigration is one of the key features of the United States Hispanic/Latine experience and background as many families from every culture and people of the Latin diaspora is the migration of family to the United States and usually within a remembered and living generation. The complaints around these stories has always been more of who told them and who was centered within the framing of the narrative. As always, let us tell our own tales!
This is the reason, mostly, why I am recommending the children’s book Until Someone Listens: A Story About Borders, Family, and One Girl’s Mission. This book is the true story of Estela Juarez and her experience of growing up in a loving, close knit family of four until her mother is deported to Mexico from the happy home she has built in the United States. From here, we see the impact having her family torn apart has on Estela having to literally cross a country to be with her family whenever she can. Through the beautifully illustrated pages of the short book, we also see Estela’s determination and, admittedly forced, activism through letters, interviews, and any other method of getting her voice out there she enacts to finally reunite her family.
Until Someone Listens: A Story About Borders, Family, and One Girl’s Mission is unfortunately a common circumstance for many Hispanic/Latine people across the diaspora, but one that deserves nuance, understanding, and appropriate attention. Thankfully, that level of care was given to relating Estela’s story in a manner that is empathetic and right for everyone of any age even with the more heavy subject matter.