January Book of the Month | Tell me How it Ends: An Essay in Forty Questions by Valeria Luiselli

Ackerman Community Book Club

Ackerman’s Community Book Club selection for January is Tell me How it Ends: An Essay in Forty Questions by Valeria Luiselli.

This book was selected to help therapists consider the experience of of immigration, racism, and trauma while working with families. How can this book help us to deepen the connection between our clinical work and social responsibilities?

Tell me How it Ends is a compilation of stories, reflections, and experiences as an interpreter for unaccompanied children looking for an opportunity for a formal hearing in an immigration court in New York City. The Immigration crisis, or the refugee crisis as the media called it, had occurred several months earlier, in 2014, when a wave of children from Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and Mexico arrived alone or were separated from their parents and guardians at the Mexico-U.S border. The border patrol detained these unaccompanied migrant children violating these minors’ legal protection. As a result, almost 7 percent of these migrant children came to New York state while their asylum and immigration cases were under consideration.

Luiselli’s book is not only a testimony of the racist, inhumane and devaluing treatment of unaccompanied minors seeking refuge in this country by the U.S. authorities but also a call for action. It certainly provides many answers, but it asks even more questions. This book is an urgent call for all of us to decide how this story finally ends.

Valeria Luiselli is a Mexican author living in the United States. Her book was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award in Criticism in 2017.

Book club selection and description written by Gloria Lopez Henrirquez, LCSW

About Ackerman’s Community Book Club:

Ackerman’s Community Book Club is a monthly series of reading recommendations curated by our family therapy instructors. We invite you to read one book each month that explores diversity, equity, and inclusion and join us on a pathway to curiosity. The books on our list have been selected with the aim of increasing knowledge, empathy, willingness, and skill to confront xenophobia as therapists, educators, and lifelong learners, in the personal and professional spaces we occupy.

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