A Wedding in Haiti by Julia Alvarez

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In a story that travels beyond borders and between families, acclaimed Dominican novelist and poet Julia Alvarez reflects on the joys and burdens of love—for her parents, for her husband, and for a young Haitian boy known as Piti. In this intimate true account of a promise kept, Alvarez 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.


About Julia Alvarez

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Julia Alvarez left the Dominican Republic for the United States in 1960 at the age of ten. She is the author of six novels, two books of nonfiction, three collections of poetry, and eight books for children and young adults. Her work has garnered wide recognition, including a Latina Leader Award in Literature in 2007 from the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, the 2002 Hispanic Heritage Award in Literature, the2000 Woman of the Year by Latina magazine, and inclusion in the New York Public Library's 1996 program "The Hand of the Poet: Original Manuscripts by 100 Masters, from John Donne to Julia Alvarez." A writer-in-residence at Middlebury College, Alvarez and her husband, Bill Eichner, established Alta Gracia, an organic coffee farm-literacy arts center, in her homeland, the Dominican Republic.
Published March 19, 2013 by Algonquin Books. 303 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Travel, Parenting & Relationships. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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A memoir by acclaimed novelist and poet Alvarez (Once Upon a Quinceañera: Coming of Age in the USA, 2007, etc.) about her pre- and post-earthquake travels around the island of Hispaniola and the Haitian boy who inspired them.

Mar 13 2012 | Read Full Review of A Wedding in Haiti

Publishers Weekly

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Although living in Vermont, Alvarez and her husband, Bill, owned a coffee farm in the mountains of her native Dominican Republic and hired Haitians, like the young man Piti, to care for it while they visited back and forth from the U.S. Making good on their soon-regretted promise to attend Pitiâ€...

Feb 13 2012 | Read Full Review of A Wedding in Haiti

Book Reporter

No one will walk away from this book without having had a compelling and memorable trip to the brink of death and back, a journey actually made fascinating by the beautiful language and open heart of Julia Alvarez, one of the world’s great novelists.

May 17 2012 | Read Full Review of A Wedding in Haiti

Christian Science Monitor

Author Julia Alvarez and her husband Bill travel to Haiti for a wedding – and then find themselves tied to a country and a culture.

Apr 26 2012 | Read Full Review of A Wedding in Haiti

Huffington Post

"A Wedding in Haiti" (Algonquin Books), by Julia Alvarez: Wedding invitations are meant to be joyous proclamations, but Julia Alvarez received one in 2009 that she had hoped would never come.

Apr 25 2012 | Read Full Review of A Wedding in Haiti


Reluctant at first, for she is scheduled to attend the Intergenerational Council of Thirteen Indigenous Grandmothers the week of the wedding, Alvarez realizes that she cannot break her promise, so she and Bill make arrangements to attend Piti’s wedding.

Aug 18 2014 | Read Full Review of A Wedding in Haiti

Bookmarks Magazine

margin: 5px;" /> Mark Kurlansky: As a Dominican growing up around Haitians and next door to Haiti what was your impression of Haiti and Haitians and what surprised you when you went there? Actually, there weren't many Haitians around when I was growing up in the 50s, un...

Apr 17 2012 | Read Full Review of A Wedding in Haiti

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