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Publisher's Summary

"A beautiful, fiercely honest, and nevertheless deeply empathetic look at those who police the border and the migrants who risk - and lose - their lives crossing it. In a time of often ill-informed or downright deceitful political rhetoric, this book is an invaluable corrective." (Phil Klay)

For Francisco Cantú, the border is in the blood. His mother, a second-generation Mexican American, raised him in Arizona's desert scrublands and the national parks where she worked as a ranger, driven to protect the places she loved. Haunted by the landscape of his youth, Cantú joins the Border Patrol. Stationed at the remote crossroads of a drug route and a smuggling corridor, he learns how to track other humans under the punishing glare of the sun and through dark, frigid nights. He detains the exhausted, the parched, huddled children yearning for their families. He hauls in the bodies from where they have fallen.

Plagued by nightmares, Cantú abandons the Patrol for civilian life. But when a friend, a regular at the café where he now works, travels back to Mexico to visit his dying mother and does not return, Cantu discovers that the border and its stories have migrated with him. Searing and unforgettable, The Line Becomes a Riverbrings home to us the destruction that US policy inflicts on countless migrants' lives, and the violence it wreaks on the humanity of us all.

©2018 Francisco Cantú (P)2018 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

"Cantú's story, and intelligent and humane perspective, should mortify anyone who ever thought building a wall might improve our lot. He advocates for clarity and compassion in place of xenophobia and uninformed rhetoric. His words are emotionally true and his literary sensibility uplifting." (Barry Lopez, author of Arctic Dreams and Of Wolves and Men )
"This book tells the hard poetry of the desert heart. If you think you know about immigration and the border, you will see there is much to learn. And you will be moved by its unexpected music." (Luis Alberto Urrea, author of The Devil's Highway)

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found it very interesting

What did you love best about The Line Becomes a River?

I appreciated and enjoyed the inclusion of border history/formation with his modern day story. thanks.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

A necessary read, I am thankful for

Where do I start?
Every minute of this audio book was powerful.

It is a raw, honest, and heartfelt view of the boarder. It is so eye opening and highlights the humanitarian crisis that happens daily.

I am in tears, of joy and hope.

I am happy people like Francisco exist and share there powerful story.

He put a name, a familiar story to people that cross our boarders.

These stories matter, their names matter.

They are all of us, we are all connected and this book will wake you up and make you realize that.

So thankful I heard him on NPR and found this book.

I am making everyone I know read it. Listen to it .

It is necessary!!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • LP
  • 02-13-18

A story of the plight of illegal Mexican immigrant wannabes .

This book says nothing more than how difficult life is for the desperate Mexicans who wish to migrate to the United States. That is already a well known fact.

0 of 5 people found this review helpful