111 pages 3 hours read

Reyna Grande

The Distance Between Us

Nonfiction | Autobiography / Memoir | Adult | Published in 2012

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The Distance Between Us

  • Genre: Nonfiction; memoir
  • Originally Published: 2012
  • Reading Level/Interest: Lexile 890L; grades 9-12; college/adult
  • Structure/Length: 2 parts; 24 chapters plus prologue and epilogue; approx. 352 pages; approx. 10 hours, 40 minutes on audio
  • Central Concern: Born in a village in Mexico, the author describes her tumultuous childhood, in which her father and mother drifted in and out of her life. Her father eventually smuggled her and her siblings into the United States, where she faced new challenges as an immigrant in Los Angeles.
  • Potential Sensitivity Issues: Domestic violence; poverty; alcohol abuse

Reyna Grande, Author

  • Bio: Born in 1975 in Iguala, Guerrero, Mexico; came to the United States as an undocumented immigrant at age nine; was the first in her family to attend college; earned her bachelor’s degree from UC Santa Cruz and her MFA in creative writing from Antioch University; is a member and instructor at the Macondo Writer’s Workshop, founded by Sandra Cisneros; speaks at schools and universities across the country
  • Other Works: Across a Hundred Mountains (2006); Dancing with Butterflies (2009); A Dream Called Home (2018); A Ballad of Love and Glory (2022)
  • Awards: National Books Critics Circle Award (finalist; 2012)

CENTRAL THEMES connected and noted throughout this Teaching Unit:

  • Intersection of Memory and Imagination
  • Geographical and Emotional Distance Within Immigrant Families
  • Conflict Between Concepts of House Versus Home
  • Forging New Identities as Immigrants