Regina Rodríguez-Martin, aka blogger Chicana on the Edge, read and reviewed Jeanine Cummins American Dirt as a public service.
Her review starts like this:
Three weeks ago I got an email announcing a new book club for women over 50, and the first novel they were going to read was Jeanine Cummins’ American Dirt. The novel focuses on a Mexican woman’s journey from her home in Acapulco to the U.S, crossing without papers in extremely dangerous ways.
Then I read about the book’s big controversy. Latinos were angry about the red carpet treatment given to this book written by a white woman because Mexican Americans telling similar stories don’t get nearly as much attention from publishers. The most scathing review was written by Myriam Gurba (and I urge you to read it). I would usually pass on a book like this.
I am a mixed-race person. My father’s indigenous ancestors are from multiple tribes of present-day Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Northern Mexico, and throughout the Americas. They’ve been on this land for over ten thousand years. My other ancestors through him hail from Mexico, West Africa, and Spain.
I was raised to believe I am White. My mom is White, of Scottish, Swedish, and French descent, and the man who raised me is a tall blonde man of Dutch-Polish descent. That’s where I get my last name – Vande Panne. It is Dutch in origin, most likely from the village of De Panne on the present-day Belgian coast.