Luis Alberto Urrea presents The House of Broken Angels at Harvard Book Store

Thursday, April 4, 2019 7:00pm

Harvard Book Store welcomes acclaimed novelist, poet, and essayist LUIS ALBERTO URREA—bestselling author of The Hummingbird's Daughter—for a discussion of his latest novel, The House of Broken Angels.

About The House of Broken Angels

"All we do, mija, is love. Love is the answer. Nothing stops it. Not borders. Not death."

In his final days, beloved and ailing patriarch Miguel Angel de La Cruz, affectionately called Big Angel, has summoned his entire clan for one last legendary birthday party. But as the party approaches, his mother, nearly one hundred, dies, transforming the weekend into a farewell doubleheader. Among the guests is Big Angel's half brother, known as Little Angel, who must reckon with the truth that although he shares a father with his siblings, he has not, as a half gringo, shared a life.

Across two bittersweet days in their San Diego neighborhood, the revelers mingle among the palm trees and cacti, celebrating the lives of Big Angel and his mother, and recounting the many inspiring tales that have passed into family lore, the acts both ordinary and heroic that brought these citizens to a fraught and sublime country and allowed them to flourish in the land they have come to call home.

Teeming with brilliance and humor, authentic at every turn, The House of Broken Angels is Luis Alberto Urrea at his best, and cements his reputation as a storyteller of the first rank.


"Epic . . . Rambunctious . . . Highly entertaining  . . . The quips and jokes come fast through a poignant novel that is very much about time itself. . . . A powerful rendering of a Mexican-American family that is also an American family." ―Viet Thanh Nguyen, New York Times Book Review

"An immensely charming and moving tale . . . Urrea deftly inhabits many points of view, dreaming up an internal voice for each. . . . A novel like The House of Broken Angels is a radical act. It is a big, epic story about how hard it is to love with all of your heart, and all of your family—regardless of which side of the border they live on." ―John Freeman, Boston Globe

"The House of Broken Angels is a big, sprawling, messy, sexy, raucous house party of a book, a pan-generational family saga with an enormous, bounding heart, a poetic delivery, and plenty of swagger. . . . The House of Broken Angels is a book about celebration that is, itself, a celebration." ―Michael Lindgren, Washington Post

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