América del Norte (Hardcover)

América del Norte By Nicolás Medina Mora Cover Image
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Moving between New York City, Mexico City, and Iowa City, a young member of the Mexican elite sees his life splinter in a centuries-spanning debut that blends the Latin American traditions of Roberto Bolaño and Fernanda Melchor with the autofiction of US writers like Ben Lerner and Teju Cole.

Sebastián lived a childhood of privilege in Mexico City. Now in his twenties, he has a degree from Yale, an American girlfriend, and a slot in the University of Iowa’s MFA program.

But Sebastián’s life is shaken by the Trump administration’s restrictions on immigrants, his mother’s terminal cancer, the cracks in his relationship, and his father’s forced resignation at the hands of Mexico’s new president. As he struggles through the Trump and López Obrador years, Sebastián must confront his father’s role in the Mexican drug war and navigate his whiteness in Mexican contexts even as he is often perceived as a person of color in the US. As he does so, the novel moves through centuries of Mexican literary history, from the 17th century letters of a peevishly polymathic Spanish colonizer to the contemporary packaging of Mexican writers for a US audience.

Split between the US and Mexico, this stunning debut explores whiteness, power, immigration, and the history of Mexican literature, to wrestle with the contradictory relationship between two countries bound by geography and torn apart by politics.

About the Author

Nicolás Medina Mora was born and raised in Mexico City. He has degrees from Yale University and the writing program of the University of Iowa, and has worked in New York City as a journalist at Reuters and BuzzFeed. His writing has appeared in The Nation, The New York Times, and n+1, where he won the 2023 n+1 Writers' Fellowship. He lives in Mexico City, where he is a writer and editor for Revista Nexos.

Praise For…

Praise for América del Norte

The Millions Most Anticipated Books of Spring

“Nicolás Medina Mora is a one-man Boom latinoamericano!”
—Joshua Cohen, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Netanyahus

“A uniquely twenty-first century voice: Nicolás Medina Mora is equally fluent in three literary traditions—Mexican, American, European. The advantages and gifts to literature of this situation are manifold, surprising, and humane. In this novel, he charts a course between history and literature and is borne aloft by these waves—the voice of the NAFTA generation, and much more.”
—Marco Roth, founding co-editor of n+1 and author of The Scientists

América del Norte is for the adventurous. Its tale of a young Mexican man coming of age between Mexico City, New York City, and Iowa City melds genres—including romance, etymological history, migration narrative, geopolitical analysis, and more—without fear, showing us that literature can be so much more than we know. Read this to remember the wonder of learning that ink on the page could mean something and that pages bound between two covers could contain a world.”
—Elias Rodriques, author of All the Water I’ve Seen Is Running

“Here’s the thing about Nico Medina Mora's debut novel: it reads like his tenth. It feels like the kind of casually elegant and elastically curious book that a master storyteller would spend a lifetime working toward. And yet, América del Norte sings to us through both its jubilant imagination and wounded intelligence so that we might all get a glimpse at a brand-new way of writing the world.”
—John D'Agata, author of About a Mountain
“A piercing critique of the shallowness of academia and the soufflélike weightlessness of American culture . . . A debut from an author to keep on your radar, assured, darkly funny, and impeccably written.”
—Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review

“Incisive and witty . . . The author casts a wry look at the absurdities of American writing programs and of Trump’s immigration policies, but what makes this special are his insights on the inner drive of aspiring artists and thinkers. It’s an arresting novel of ideas.”
Publishers Weekly

Product Details
ISBN: 9781641295642
ISBN-10: 1641295643
Publisher: Soho Press
Publication Date: May 7th, 2024
Pages: 480
Language: English