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Cuando Era Puertorriquena (Texto Completo) [When I was Puerto Rican ] | [Esmeralda Santiago]

Cuando Era Puertorriquena (Texto Completo) [When I was Puerto Rican ]

From a rippled zinc shack in rural Puerto Rico to "the better life" in a decaying Brooklyn tenement, Esmeralda Santiago's Puerto Rican childhood is one of sorcery, smoldering war between the sexes, and high comedy. Hers is a portrait of a harsh but enchanted world that can never be reclaimed.
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Publisher's Summary

From a rippled zinc shack in rural Puerto Rico to "the better life" in a decaying Brooklyn tenement, Esmeralda Santiago's Puerto Rican childhood is one of sorcery, smoldering war between the sexes, and high comedy. Hers is a portrait of a harsh but enchanted world that can never be reclaimed.

Note: This audiobook is in Spanish. Este audiolibro es en Espanol.

©1993 Esmeralda Santiago; (P)2007 Recorded Books, LLC

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (59 )
5 star
 (37)
4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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Overall
4.6 (32 )
5 star
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Story
4.6 (28 )
5 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Jeanne Carmel, IN United States 12-16-08
    Jeanne Carmel, IN United States 12-16-08 Member Since 2014

    Lover of books in Spanish

    HELPFUL VOTES
    40
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    6
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    3
    0
    Overall
    "Touching"

    This book held my interest and was very enjoyable. Unlike the other reviewers, I'm not from Puerto Rico but have been learning Spanish and purchased the book in order to practice reading in that language.
    I was fascinated with the story and couldn't wait to find out what was going to happen next. There was humor throughout and the author had a unique way of reacting to things. She and I graduated from high school in the same year (as it turns out) and I could relate to some of the history in the book and the family stories were also quite moving.
    I did feel as though the author sometimes seemed to feel a little "picked on" but that didn't detract from the story at all. She was also completely impressive and intelligent and lived a life far different from my own. I loved the book and learned lots of Spanish along the way. The story was quite touching and I'm looking forward to reading anything I can by Esmeralda Santiago.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lylye NJ, US 12-05-08
    Lylye NJ, US 12-05-08 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    16
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    37
    13
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    FOLLOWING
    7
    2
    Overall
    "Excellent"

    From the time I heard the way the author described the feel and smell of a "guayaba", I was in awe. As a puertorican myself, this book just brought to mind all those stories, most of them sad, of other family members leaving your island behind and try to make a better life.How they struggled to hold on to their customs in strange land and not get swallowed by their adoptive one.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth Arias Phoenix, AZ United States 12-06-07
    Elizabeth Arias Phoenix, AZ United States 12-06-07

    cdclisa

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    29
    2
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "Great Read"

    This book brings back my own childhood memories of growing up Puerto Rican in Brooklyn. I loved it!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Miriam New York, NY, USA 11-21-07
    Miriam New York, NY, USA 11-21-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "takes you back in time"

    Listening to Esmeralda Santiago tell this story took me back to when I was Puerto Rican. I was 5 yrs old when I first came to NY and now at 55 yrs old I can still remember a few things from Puerto Rico and the school days here in NY. The time when I was also put back a grade because I didn't speak English.
    If you want to relive those good old days when you was Puerto Rican I would buy this book and the one that follows "Casi una mujer" which I am about to do as soon as I post this review. God Bless, Miriam

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tez L Los Angeles, CA USA 05-29-12
    Tez L Los Angeles, CA USA 05-29-12 Member Since 2011

    Tez L

    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    42
    26
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good, interesting"
    What did you love best about Cuando Era Puertorriquena (Texto Completo) [When I was Puerto Rican ]?

    I loved hearing about what it was like in Puerto Rico, the family life, and the naive observances of Esmeralda (naive because she was young, and so described in that way). I also loved hearing about the US through the eyes of a young girl in Puerto Rico. I'm several generations US citizen on both sides so when it comes to immigration, I have zero first hand experience and I really enjoyed listening to the story of how it came about for Esmeralda Santiago. It was all beautifully described and engaging.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    I loved hearing about what it was like once they got on the plane to the US. "All I could taste was salt." Compared to Puerto Rico, the only spice we seem to use is salt! It's very true. And I LOVED hearing about her experiences in the US school system, as a foreigner. It is something very foreign to me, as a white-bread type American, and I found it very interesting. I cried a few times in this part, not from sadness though. It was quite incredible.


    Any additional comments?

    I listened to this book in Spanish, it was very good. Upon finishing the only thing I wanted to do was go and buy the next installation, Almost a Woman. I haven't yet, mostly because it doesn't get great reviews, but I will someday. It's a well-written, well-performed memoir.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jose Caguas, Puerto Rico 04-09-12
    Jose Caguas, Puerto Rico 04-09-12
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excelente"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    It is an excellent way of recalling Puertorrican's traditions with humor and crude reality.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    My favorite character was Esmeralda.


    Have you listened to any of Esmeralda Santiago’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When she went to the audition at Performing Arts High School and after all her hard work and preparation, her nervousness prevailed.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alan San Diego, CA, United States 02-28-12
    Alan San Diego, CA, United States 02-28-12 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    77
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    REVIEWS
    368
    97
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    FOLLOWING
    1
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    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Enjoyable and beautifully narrated"

    This is the first great book in Spanish I have found on Audible -a wonderfully detailed story of a young girl growing up in Puerto Rico. I took a risk on this one and am glad I did. How often can an author narrate their own work? Esmeralda Santiago is both a great author and narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    gilma GILBERT, AZ, United States 10-25-11
    gilma GILBERT, AZ, United States 10-25-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
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    Story
    "Una vida normal entre los latinoamericanos."

    Santiago tiene una forma de contar las historias del pasado como si las estuviera viviendo, No he terminado el libro, pero es una historia de familia bien contada y que me recuerda muchas de las mias.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jonathan AGUADILLA, PUERTO RICO, United States 10-09-10
    Jonathan AGUADILLA, PUERTO RICO, United States 10-09-10
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    "Neggy"

    I really enjoy this book, perhaps because I'm a Puerto Rican too but no one else can imagine how it feels to be and not to be a Puerto Rican.....

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lori Caledonia, MS, USA 06-19-09
    Lori Caledonia, MS, USA 06-19-09
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    "muy, muy bien"

    Me encanta este libro; es muy inteligente sin ser pesado. Lo lei primero, pero la version audible - narrado por la autora - hace el cuento mas vivo.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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