Kali Fajardo-Anstine’s “Woman of Light” is a captivating story of survival, love, and fate that spans five generation of an Indigenous Chicano family in the American West. The novel tells the story of Luz “Little Light” Lopez, a tea leaf reader and laundress, and how she is left to fend for herself after her older brother, Diego, a snake charmer, and factory worker, is run out of town by a violent white mob. As Luz navigates 1930s Denver, she begins to have visions that transport her to her Indigenous homeland in the nearby Lost Territory. Luz recollects her ancestors’ origins, how her family flourished, and how they were threatened. She bears witness to the sinister forces that have devastated her people and their homelands for generations. In the end, it is up to Luz to save her family stories from disappearing into oblivion.
Fajardo-Anstine wrote “Woman of Light” as a way to tell the story of her ancestors and for them to be seen. Although the physical evidence of her ancestors’ homes are gone, she wants it to be known that their stories are vividly alive in Woman of Light. She wants other Chicanos, Latinos, Indigenous people, and people coming from multi-cultural backgrounds to understand who they are. Her goal while writing “Woman of Light” was for her fellow Latinos and Chicanos to hear and understand their ancestors’ stories of survival and to embrace that history with open arms.
Please join us in a book discussion of “Woman of Light,” led by Diana Sabrina Muñoz, the Community Library’s summer programs intern. The discussion is open to ALL, and free books will be given to the first 15 readers who sign up. Attendees will also be given a ticket to hear Fajardo-Anstine speak as part of the New Voice panel at the Sun Valley Writers’ Conference on Saturday, July 16 at 2:15 p.m. at the Sun Valley resort.
Registration is required to join us, receive a book, and a ticket to the Conference event. Books will be available for pick up at the Library no later than June 27. Participants will be notified as soon as they are available.