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12 Audiobooks by Latina Authors That You Can ‘Read’ On the Drive to Work

Growing up, I buried myself in book after book because it was how I came alive, how I escaped into other worlds, and how I learned about different kinds of people. As I grew older, however, I had less and less time to read for pleasure. During school, there were too many reading assignments for me to take on anything for myself except for during the summers. Then, as my career began, I was busy rockin’ it and advancing to really do much reading for fun — until I discovered audiobooks a year ago and became obsessed.

There are so many reasons to love audiobooks. For one, they can be there on Sundays while you’re doing chores, they are also a great way to learn something new am while running errands or heading to work.

If you’re looking to add a bit more literature to your life while you’re on the go, here are 12 audiobooks by Latina authors you’ll love.

1. Getting Off: One Woman’s Journey Through Sex and Porn Addiction by Erica Garza

I admit it: This book made me blush a LOT but it was an absolutely incredible, revealing read. Erica Garza’s tale of sex and porn addiction, read by Joy Osmanski, was definitely one to behold. The Mexican-American author recounts everything from her early trials into masturbation to meeting the man who eventually became her husband and everything in between. Maybe just don’t listen to this one with anyone else around…

2. American Like Me: Reflections on Life Between Cultures by America Ferrera

This essay collection, which was put together by none other than America Ferrera, is full of interesting and intense tales by Americans who have been raised with more than one background — such as Wilmer Valderrama (who is Venezuelan-American), Diane Guerrero (who is Colombian-American and whose own book appears on this list), Laurie Hernandez (who is Puerto Rican). The book is primarily read by America Ferrera with various guest-authors reading their own words.

3. Between Breaths: A Memoir of Panic and Addiction by Elizabeth Vargas

As someone who suffers from anxiety and is also an alcoholic, Elizabeth Vargas’ memoir touched me deeply. Reading about her slowly increasing alcohol intake, how she dealt with it while also having a successful career at ABC, and all of the steps she took to heal since was incredible. I especially loved reading them in her own voice, since her calm tone really adds an extra dimension to the piece.

4. In the Country We Love: My Family Divided by Diane Guerrero with Michelle Burford

Diane Guerrero’s memoir is a touching story of her separation from her parents and one that has moved me deeply. It is especially heartbreaking to read it again, now, with stories of so many children being separated from their families today. Guerrero has been a champion for immigrant rights and, in this book read by her, it is especially poignant today.

5. Once Upon a Quinceañera: Coming of Age in the USA by Julia Alvarez

If you had a quinceañera while living in the U.S., then you can probably relate to this wonderful non-fiction book by the well-known author Julia Alvarez. Although you might primarily know her from her fiction (like How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents), this book read by actress Daphne Rubin-Vega is definitely a must-read for any little Latina girl who grew up in America.

6. Handbook for an Unpredictable Life: How I Survived Sister Renata and My Crazy Mother, and Still Came Out Smiling (with Great Hair) by Rosie Perez

Rosie Perez is hysterical and her memoir is hysterical in kind. It is a detailing of her life (and her obsession with her hair — which I admit is totally great). Thankfully, she reads this memoir herself, which definitely makes the book an A+ in my book. Her wisdom for having an “unpredictable life” is definitely something that you’ll love, too.

7. My (Underground) American Dream: My True Story as an Undocumented Immigrant Who Became a Wall Street Executive by Julissa Arce

You may have heard of Julissa Arce back when this book came out a few years ago. If not, then you are hopefully hearing about her now, with the recent publication of her second memoir, Someone Like Me: How One Undocumented Girl Fought for Her American Dream. It’s a timely topic but, unfortunately, doesn’t have an audiobook yet. However, her first book, which is read by her, is just as great and definitely deserves a read in the meantime.

8. The Body Book: The Law of Hunger, the Science of Strength, and Other Ways to Love Your Amazing Body by Cameron Diaz with Sandy Rustin

There is absolutely no denying that Cuban-American actress Cameron Diaz looks absolutely amazing for her age. If you’ve ever wanted to know her secrets, then look no further than this book. She has a sequel, too, but this is a great one to start with. Although the sequel speaks more to longevity (and how exactly she looks so amazing!), this one, read by Diaz and her co-author, is a fantastic primer in everything that you need to know about your body.

9. My Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayor

You’ll see Moreno’s name here again, but for now, all you need to know is that she reads Sonia Sotomayor’s memoir — and that is just a powerhouse combo that you won’t be able to resist. If you’ve ever wanted to be inspired by someone’s story and rise in politics, then this is your next big read. It’s a bit difficult to read in the current political climate, but still an inspirational book that might have you crying once or twice.

10. A Cup of Water Under My Bed: A Memoir by Daisy Hernandez

Daisy Hernandez reads her memoir in this thrilling audiobook version. Her coming-of-age tale as a queer Latina (she’s Colombian-Cuban) is definitely one that you will want to read. This lyrical memoir is absolutely wonderful and a bit different than a lot of the books on this list. This wonder is a book that I can wholeheartedly recommend for this list.

11. Rita Moreno: A Memoir by Rita Moreno

Do you know how absolutely amazing Rita Moreno is? This memoir written and read by the author is something that you should run out and get ASAP (or, you know, order online and download). It’s the story of her life, her rise in Hollywood, and what it is like to be a Latina in Hollywood. It’s a pretty intriguing read, honestly, and definitely, a fun look at the golden age of Hollywood.

12. Almost a Woman by Esmeralda Santiago

Esmeralda Santiago is no stranger to writing memoir. Most will know her best for her book When I Was Puerto Rican — but that doesn’t make our list since there’s no audiobook version if it (though it’s definitely still worth picking up). This is another of her memoirs and one about what it is like to become a woman. Her journey into womanhood is one that you will relate to and that will delight you for years to come. Because trust me, you’ll be rereading this one.


Read: Keyanna Gotay Is Using Social Media To Keep Garifuna Culture Alive

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Netflix Is Turning Gabriel García Márquez’s Classic ‘One Hundred Years of Solitude’ Into A Series

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Netflix Is Turning Gabriel García Márquez’s Classic ‘One Hundred Years of Solitude’ Into A Series

Fans of magical realism rejoice. On Wednesday, Netflix announced it acquired the rights to Gabriel García Márquez’s “One Hundred Years of Solitude” and will be turning the literary masterpiece into a Spanish-language series.

This is the first time the 1967 novel, considered “one of the most significant works of the 20th Century,” will be adapted for screen. For years, the author, who died in 2014, refused to sell the film rights, believing the story could not be done justice through a two-hour project, according to Deadline.

Rodrigo Garcia and Gonzalo García Barcha, García Márquez’s sons, who are serving as executive producers on the show, believe a series is an appropriate approach to the book.

“For decades, our father was reluctant to sell the film rights to Cien Años de Soledad. He believed that it could not be made under the time constraints of a feature film, or that producing it in a language other than Spanish would not do it justice,” Rodrigo Garcia told BuzzFeed News, adding that the “current golden age of series,” with “the level of talented writing and directing, the cinematic quality of content,” changed the family’s mind.

“The time could not be better to bring an adaptation to the extraordinary global viewership that Netflix provides,” he continued.

The series will be filmed in Colombia.

“One Hundred Years of Solitude” tells the story of the multi-generational Buendia family, whose patriarch Jose Arcadio Buendia founded Macondo, a fictional town in the South American country.

The book has sold more than 50 million copies and has been translated into 46 languages.

In a statement, Francisco Ramos, Netflix’s vice president of Spanish-language content, said, “We know our members around the world love watching Spanish-language films and series and we feel this will be a perfect match of project and our platform.”

He’s right. Since announcing the adaptation, fans of the magical realism novel have been celebrating the news.

There’s no word yet on when the series will debut and who will star in it.

Read: This Film About Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Is At The Center Of The Most Expensive Sundance Documentary Deal Of All Time

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Latina Reads: ‘Pride’ Is The Afro-Latinx YA Novel You Wish You Read As A Teen

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Latina Reads: ‘Pride’ Is The Afro-Latinx YA Novel You Wish You Read As A Teen

It’s no secret that Latinx representation is severely missing in media, especially for Afro-Latinos. Although the numbers are slowly getting better on television, movies and in music, the literary space is still lagging behind. But all of that is slowly changing in particular thanks to critically acclaimed author Ibi Zoboi, whose first novel, American Street, told the tale of young Haitian immigrant Fabiola Toussaint navigating the dangerous streets of Detroit on her own after her mother is detained by U.S. immigration.

Now, Zoboi brings us a timely update on the classic novel Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austin — but this time told through the perspectives of Zuri Benitez (a.k.a. Elizabeth Bennet) and Darius Darcy (a.k.a. Mr. Darcy).

Zoboi’s latest masterpiece is titled Pride.

In Pride, we first meet Zuri, an Afro-Latina teen who has plenty of pride. She has pride in her roots, pride in her family and, most of all, pride in Brooklyn. But when the wealthy Darcy family moves in across the street, Zuri isn’t sure that her pride is enough to change the gentrification that is quickly happening in her beloved neighborhood. Even worse, her older sister Janae starts to fall for charming Ainsley at the same time as Zuri is thrown together with the arrogant Darius, who she can’t stand and wants nothing to do with.

It’s an unexpected joy to be drawn into the world of Pride, where so many changes are happening all at once. As Bushwick changes and families that used to live there for ages are priced out and Zuri begins to fight to keep her home, we readers are drawn into her battle quickly.

She is just the kind of Latina that we rarely read about before: She is smart, quick-witted and not afraid to stand up for what she believes in. She is passionate, cares deeply about her family and is, in a sense, even a little fearless. But she’s also still a teenager, which is part of what makes this novel so irresistible.

Zuri has all the hope and fears that we all had as kids about to turn into adults.

She sees the world changing and she doesn’t know what she can do about it but she wants to do something. It’s that passion and drive which makes her both a captivating character and someone we can relate to.

And perhaps because Zuri is a teenager or because this is a remix of Pride and Prejudice, there is the predictable romantic chaos. Soon enough, Zuri finds herself being pulled in different directions by her growing attraction to Darius, who she still kind of hates, and the oh-so-cute Warren (a.k.a George Wickham), who Darius kind of hates.

One of the most surprising and enchanting things about the novel, however, is the way the characters speak. Zoboi doesn’t try to dumb down or change their language. She doesn’t try to make them sound high-brow or proper, which some reviewers had a problem with, but she does make them sound like exactly who they are: An Afro-Latino family growing up in today’s Brooklyn. Zuri is unapologetically herself and the way she speaks is beautiful, complicated and not even remotely make-belief.

One of the big wins of Pride is that Zuri and the other characters sound like themselves with no pretense and just the right amount of class and a dash of sass.

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Repost from @owlcrate We were so thrilled to include Pride by @ibizoboi in our October box! It’s a modern day Pride and Prejudice remix set in Brooklyn, NY. It deals with many complex issues but is also totally swoon-worthy. And Ibi’s writing is absolutely stunning! ???? The edition we included featured an exclusive cover, exclusive end papers, exclusive color hardback, and it was SIGNED! The publisher truly put a lot of love into the design of this book! ???? Want to get your hands on a copy? We have some extras available for purchase at shop.owlcrate.com while supplies last. ???? Have you read Pride yet? What did you think?? ???? Photos tagged with the original creators! ???? OwlCrate Photo Challenge: Pride & Hot Pink. #ocbookstore ???? #owlcrate #subscriptionbox #bookstagram #pride #ibizoboi #exclusiveedition #bookmail #happyreading #currentlyreading #epicreads

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Without revealing too much about how the novel ends (you’ll have to actually read all of Pride for that), it’s safe to say that Zoboi deserves all of the praise that she has received for her work. But what really matters in a book like this isn’t how she “skillfully balances cultural identity, class and gentrification against the heady magic of first love in her vibrant reimagining of this beloved classic” (from the book’s back cover), though these things are all great too, but rather what it represents and means for future generation of Latinx kids picking up this young adult novel at their library, local bookstore or online.

A book like this can mean so much to those of us who grew up without seeing ourselves in the pages of the books we were taught in school or the books we found at the library. It’s why today, even as adults, we still pick up YA novels with the hopes of seeing our younger selves in their pages. A book like Pride reminds us of that. It reminds us of what it’s like to be a teen and it reinforces the importance of seeing yourself in literature.

The Haitian author, who recently took down an “insulting review” of Pride that made us all wish we had her clap-back game, touched on something special in the story of Zuri the Afro-Latina in Brooklyn. Here’s hoping Zoboi continues to write her black and Latinx representative novels for a long, long time.

Read: 13 Latina Fantasy Books For the Sci-Fi Lover in Your Life

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