Voces Sin Fronteras

Gr 7 Up–Sixteen Latinx teens who emigrated from Mexico and Central America tell their stories in this bilingual volume, the result of a collaboration between nonprofit press Shout Mouse and the Latin American Youth Center in Washington, DC. While the artwork is at times unpolished, the comics will reverberate with readers. Following each piece is a reflection by its contributor. This powerful compendium amplifies teens' understanding of the young immigrant experience—facing fears, overcoming sadness and the temptation to give up, learning a new language, and being left by parents who migrated first, then forgiving and reuniting with them decades later. Contributors share the wisdom gained from shaping their identity through storytelling. Tato fled violence in Honduras and crafts his own vision of the American dream: to become someone who has a positive impact on others. Alejandro concludes, "You never fasil, you only gain experience." Insightful quotes in the essays are highlighted in large typeface: "The mind is treacherous, just because it tells us we can not, does not mean it is true."

VERDICT Spotlighting underrepresented voices, this work is highly recommended for all communities in their efforts to promote empathetic, inclusive discussions around immigration.

Sara Lissa Paulson, School Library Journal

Voces Sin Fronteras

As Spanish teachers, we work to introduce our students to the cultures and realities of Spanish-speaking countries, including the United States. Immigration stories are an important part of that experience, and there is no better way to share it with students than Voces Sin Fronteras: Our Stories, Our Truth.

Immigration is not an easy topic to tackle with students. Regardless of your background, it is difficult to represent the experiences of others. It is especially hard to give students an understanding of the complex issues involved in immigration.

The best answer is for individuals to tell their own stories, and for teachers to add additional context. In Voces Sin Fronteras, sixteen young people share their stories of immigration in comics. In my opinion, this side-by-side bilingual collection of graphic memoirs belongs in every Spanish and English class in the country.

Voces Sin Fronteras is published by the non-profit Shout Mouse Press. Learn more about the organization and purchase Voces Sin Fronteras: Our Stories, Our Truth on the Shout Mouse Press website.

Spanish Playground

Voces Sin Fronteras

I read Voces Sin Fronteras and it makes me think how we here in America take for granted the little things in life like going to school and being able to be a child and not have to worry about working to help the family and how we are safer here than anywhere in the world and then we have our president here sending troops to the Mexico border to stop people that are not trying to come in illegally but walk into the border crossing and asking for asylum the legal way. It hits home for me because my daughter lives in Mexico with her mom because I'm locked up. She is a United States citizen but has to stay there till I'm out. The book is over the top and I commend the kids that wrote it.

Eugene H., Free Minds member

Voces Sin Fronteras

Though immigration is a hotly discussed topic, it’s not often that we hear from the perspective of young immigrants. Fortunately, the Latin American Youth Center of D.C. (LAYC) and Shout Mouse Press have partnered to publish "Voces Sin Fronteras: Our Stories, Our Truth (link is external)," a collection of young immigrants’ stories.

Voces Sin Fronteras is a graphic novel, written by 16 teenage co-authors who have separately immigrated to the United States. Each author contributed a section of the book to tell the story of their own journey.

The University of Maryland Latin American Studies Center (link is external) (LASC) recently hosted three of the co-authors for a panel discussion as part of the university’s Year of Immigration (link is external). At the event, the teenagers shared their biggest influences, challenges, and experiences writing and drawing for the book.

The authors explained that they want to raise awareness about the realities of being a young immigrant, and shared a few of the lessons they have learned from their own experiences.

“I have changed a lot since I’ve been in this country. I’m stronger now,” Rosa, the author of a chapter titled Mariposa Negra, told the audience. “I have been very determined and persevered. If this door closes, you have to go to another and keep knocking … because a door is going to open.”

Isabella Nery, University of Maryland

Voces Sin Fronteras

'Voces sin Fronteras' is a graphic novel-style book of 32 short stories documenting hardships Latinx Immigrants faced in their home countries, as well as in the United States.

Ranging from the loss of family members who leave home for a better life, whether for employment or educational opportunities or to be closer to family members, they are the true stories of people who participated in the Latino Youth Leadership Council, part of the Columbia Heights-base nonprofit organization, the Latin American Youth Center (LAYC).

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Voces Sin Fronteras

"Issues about immigration and its impact on families have been prominent in the current US political scene, with a gross amount of injustice and racism cast toward many people seeking asylum. This book is an excellent entry into this political conversation, with sixteen true accounts from the lives of young people who have come over from Latin American countries to live and find a better life in the United States. These adolescents are the Latino Youth Leadership Council of the Washington DC-based Latin American Youth Center, founded in 1968.”

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