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The Volcano Daughters

Published by Oneworld Publications
Distributed by Simon & Schuster

About The Book

Four of us. Lourdes, María, Cora, Lucia. We had once been five, before Graciela left us. All of these cuentos belong to us. Trust us when we take your hands.

'A gripping and spellbinding novel about a sisterhood ripped apart by violence, narrated by a ghostly chorus. An unforgettable debut.' Brit Bennett, author of The Vanishing Half

Graciela is raised in the shadow of El Salvador's Izalco volcanos, dusty-kneed and bound closely to her friends. Her life changes entirely when a messenger from the Capital comes to claim her. At nine years old she has been selected to work as an oracle to the country's fearsome dictator, who believes she is a muse capable of foreseeing the future of El Salvador.

Brought to the city, far from her mother and friends, Graciela is introduced to Consuelo, the sister she’s never known. Consuelo is wilful, talented and desirous, and despite their differences the girls are a small fortress within the dictator’s regime.

La Matanza - the brutal massacre that tore through El Salvador in 1932 - will change their lives, and their country, forever. But neither ever gives up hope that they might be reunited once more. Narrated by a chorus of victims of the massacre - ghost girls who have died, but who have not yet finished telling their story - The Volcano Daughters is an unforgettable story about resilience, reinvention and sisterhood.

* A Most Anticipated Book of the Year from Vulture and Electric Literature *

About The Author

Gina María Balibrera is a Salvadoran-American writer. She has an MFA in Prose from the University of Michigan's Helen Zell Writers' Program, where she was also a postgraduate fellow. She has been awarded grants from the Gould Center, the Rackham Institute, a Tyson Award, the Aura Estrada Prize, the Under the Volcano Sandra Cisneros Fellowship, and is currently a member of the inaugural Periplus Fellowship cohort. The Volcano Daughters is her first novel.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Oneworld Publications (October 3, 2024)
  • Length: 368 pages
  • ISBN13: 9780861545391

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Raves and Reviews

'A gripping and spellbinding novel about a sisterhood ripped apart by violence, narrated by a ghostly chorus. An unforgettable debut.' Brit Bennett, author of The Vanishing Half

'Inventive, surprising, and potent, I fell under Gina Balibrera's spell from the first line... The Volcano Daughters blew my mind with its rich humor, its beautiful portrayal of women's lives, and its unstoppable plot.' Chelsea Bieker, author of Madwoman

'Stunning: original, magical, brutal, beautiful. A sweeping yet intimate look at love, sisterhood, and resistance in the face of devastation.' Charmaine Wilkerson, author of Black Cake

'A bilingual, mythological, and original debut about resistance and survival.' Vulture

'A dark marvel of a book... Balibrera's fusion of history and legend, puts me in mind of a young Isabel Allende.' Peter Ho Davies, author of A Lie Someone Told You About Yourself

'Astonishing... One of the most powerful stories of motherhood, sisterhood, and survival I've ever read. A colossal achievement.' Julie Buntin, author of Marlena

'A new heir to the magical realism throne.' Seattle Times

'A gorgeous and painful tapestry, rich with history, memory... The Volcano Daughters is a dazzling accomplishment.' Kirstin Valdez Quade, author of The Five Wounds

'A towering achievement at the intersection of ancient myth, political history, and vibrant storytelling.' Kali Fajardo-Anstine, author of Woman of Light

'Every character comes vibrantly to life in The Volcano Daughters. Every scene surprises with unexpected tremors of questions about the legacy of political violence... Gina María Balibrera is a writer of tremendous imagination.' Idra Novey, author of Take What You Need

'A captivating rendition of early-20th-century El Salvador... Riveting... The resilience of sisterly bonds forms the backbone of this swirling, heart-wrenching debut.' Kirkus

'Balibrera’s haunting debut traces the lives of Graciela and Consuelo, sisters who escape 1930s El Salvador in the wake of genocide and political unrest... A devastating story of sisterhood, community, and memory, quietly magical and utterly unforgettable.' Library Journal

'The Volcano Daughters is a beautiful novel, weaving together magic and humour with tragedy and the unflinching documentary of injustice in a way that is so skilful and surprising.' Eleanor Shearer, author of River Sing Me Home

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