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Immigration Book Discussion Series with Lupita Reads: Across a Hundred Mountains

Immigration Book Discussion Series with Lupita Reads & Washington Performing Arts Society

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Lupita Aquino (Lupita.Reads) hosts a discussion of Across a Hundred Mountains by Reyna Grande as part of Washington Performing Arts Society’s series of book discussions across the city and in conjunction with the premier of composer Jimmy Lopez and Pulitzer-winning playwright Nilo Cruz’s work Dreamers .

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The winner of a 2007 American Book Award, Across a Hundred Mountains is a stunning and poignant novel about a young girl who leaves her small town in Mexico to find her father, who left his family to find work in America—a story of migration, loss, and discovery.

In Across a Hundred Mountains, Reyna Grande puts a human face on the controversial issue of immigration, helping readers to better understand those who risk life and limb every day in pursuit of a better life.

Reyna Grande is an award-winning author, motivational speaker, and writing teacher. As a girl, she crossed the US–Mexico border to join her family in Los Angeles, a harrowing journey chronicled in The Distance Between Us, a National Book Critics Circle Award finalist that has been adopted as the common read selection by over twenty schools and colleges and fourteen cities across the country. Her other books include a 2018 memoir A Dream Called Home andDancing with Butterflies. She lives in Woodland, CA with her husband and two children. Visit

Throughout the 2018/19 season, Washington Performing Arts is collaborating with arts, cultural heritage, education, and literary partners throughout D.C. to facilitate a multi-disciplinary dialogue around the important contributions and experiences of Latinx immigrants in the United States. Musical performances, visual art displays, panel discussions, education programs, and a book discussion series together showcase the wide range of journeys of identity and place experienced by our Latinx neighbors.  

The focal point is the March 17, 2019 premiere (via simulcast to Sidney Harman Hall) of Washington Performing Arts’ co-commission Dreamers, a new work for orchestra, soprano, and chorus by composer Jimmy López and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Nilo Cruz. Dreamers tells the story of several so-called “dreamers,” immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children and whose legal status is in jeopardy because their parents arrived in the U.S. undocumented. The fictional story is based on true testimonies that Cuban-American Cruz and Peruvian-American López have collected from immigrants who have come to the U.S. in search of a better life. 

The Immigration Book Discussion Series builds on these themes by facilitating community dialogues about Latinx immigration to the United States as represented in fiction and non-fiction work. The conversations will be led by Lupita Aquino—better known as “Lupita Reads”, herself a Mexican immigrant and the co-founder and co-moderator for LIT on H St Book Club, hosted at Solid State Books. She is a passionate reader active in both the local and the series will explore recent fiction and non-fiction works by Luis Alberto Urrea, Francisco Cantú, and Reyna Grande that share a wide range of perspectives on migration across the U.S.-Mexico border.

Co-presented by Washington Performing Arts’ Mars Urban Arts Initiative, DC Public Library, Politics & Prose, Solid State Books, and Lupita Reads. Made possible in part through the generous support of Jacqueline Badger Mars, Mars, Incorporated, Tom Gallagher, in honor of Turnaround, Inc., and Events DC.

600 H Street NE, Washington, DC 20002

This event is FREE and open to the public.