Lost Children Archive: A novel (Paperback)

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February 2019 Indie Next List

“Really incredible fiction takes you on a journey, and somewhere along the way you realize how much of it reflects your own reality. In Lost Children Archive, Valeria Luiselli’s narrator is highly observant of her inner life and the world around her. She unravels a story that’s about family and how walls between people and nations are built — and what they damage. In reading this book, I felt like I was in the car on the family’s road trip — feeling all the conflicting emotions that Luiselli’s narrator is feeling as a partner, mother, and resident in today’s United States.”
— Zoey Cole, Books Are Magic, Brooklyn, NY




In Valeria Luiselli’s fiercely imaginative novel, a mother and father set out with their two children, a boy and a girl, driving from New York to Arizona in the heat of summer. As the family travels west, through Virginia to Tennessee, across Oklahoma and Texas, the bonds between them begin to fray: a fissure is growing between the parents, one the children can almost feel beneath their feet.
Through songs and maps and a Polaroid camera’s lens, the children try to make sense of both their family’s crisis and the larger one engulfing the news: the stories of thousands of kids trying to cross the southwestern border into the United States but getting detained—or lost in the desert along the way.
A breath-taking feat of literary virtuosity, Lost Children Archive is timely, compassionate, subtly hilarious, and formally inventive—a powerful, urgent story about what it is to be human in an inhuman world.

About the Author

Valeria Luiselli was born in Mexico City and grew up in South Korea, South Africa, and India. An acclaimed writer of both fiction and nonfiction, she is the author of the essay collection Sidewalks; the novels Faces in the Crowd and The Story of My Teeth; and, most recently, Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay in Forty Questions. She is the recipient of a MacArthur “Genius Grant,” the winner of two Los Angeles Times Book Prizes and an American Book Award, and has been nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award twice and the Kirkus Prize on three occasions. She has been a National Book Foundation “5 Under 35” honoree and the recipient of a Bearing Witness Fellowship from the Art for Justice Fund. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, Granta, and McSweeney’s, among other publications, and has been translated into more than twenty languages. She lives in New York City.

Praise For…

“Impossibly smart, full of beauty, heart and insight. Everyone should read this book.”
—Tommy Orange, author of There There

“A Great American Novel for our time.”
Vanity Fair
“Unforgettable, down to its explosive final sentence. . . . [Luiselli] audaciously stretches the bounds of storytelling.”
Entertainment Weekly

“Virtuosic. . . . The brilliance of the writing stirs rage and pity. It humanizes us.”
The New York Times Book Review
“This is a novel that challenges us, as a nation, to reconcile our differences. . . . [The] writing shimmers like its desert setting.”
The Washington Post

“Electric, elastic, alluring, new.”
The New York Times
 “A remarkable feat of empathy.”
“[A] brilliantly intricate and constantly surprising book.”
The New Yorker
“[Luiselli’s] language is so transporting, it stops you time and again.” 
O, The Oprah Magazine
“Like all great novels. . . . Lost Children Archive is unquestionably timely, [but] it also approaches a certain timelessness.”
Los Angeles Times
“Stunning. . . . Uniquely rewarding—and even life-changing.”
The Seattle Times
“Delicate, funny, effortlessly poetic.”
The Guardian
The New York Review of Books
“Rollicking. . . A highly imaginative and politically deft portrait of childhood within a vast American landscape.”
Harper’s Magazine

Product Details
ISBN: 9780525436461
ISBN-10: 0525436464
Publisher: Vintage
Publication Date: February 4th, 2020
Pages: 384