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Beneath the Cicadas' Song (Paperback)
In a tight-knit and vibrant community facing displacement, four teenagers come of age and learn to survive.
Gabriela, a whimsical and imaginative young girl who cannot speak, depends on her mother and community leader, Jimena, to stand up to the forces behind the plans for destruction. Seizing an opportunity, Armon, a young man caught up in a gang, grapples with his past and identity as he decides whether to break the cycle of crime.
Teenage girls Olga and Cristina are disappointed and angry at their own parents for folding beneath the pressure. They wonder about their futures while daily challenges create other plans for them.
As bulldozers arrive, the threads of their lives are woven together, revealing the brutal choices they all must make.
Beneath the Cicadas' Song was inspired by 600 hours of in-depth observation and first-person interviews with 50 people in two settlements in Costa Rica, as well as research on the social and political dynamics in Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Nicaragua. This story emphasizes the complexity and urgency of tackling inequality as climate change, conflict, and COVID-19 loom large.