Lost Children Archive

Lost Children Archive Review

From the two-time NBCC Finalist, a fiercely imaginative novel about a family's summer road trip across America--a journey that, with breathtaking imagery, spare lyricism, and profound humanity, probes the nature of justice and equality in America today.

A mother and father set out with their kids from New York to Arizona. In their used Volvo--and with their ten-year-old son trying out his new Polaroid camera--the family is heading for the Apacheria: the region the Apaches once called home, and where the ghosts of Geronimo and Cochise might still linger. The father, a sound documentarist, hopes to gather an "inventory of echoes" from this historic, mythic place. The mother, a radio journalist, becomes consumed by the news she hears on the car radio, about the thousands of children trying to reach America but getting stranded at the southern border, held in detention centers, or being sent back to their homelands, to an unknown fate.
But as the family drives farther west--through Virginia to Tennessee, across Oklahoma and Texas--we sense they are on the brink of a crisis of their own. A fissure is growing between the parents, one the children can feel beneath their feet. They are led, inexorably, to a grand, unforgettable adventure--both in the harsh desert landscape and within the chambers of their own imaginations.
Told through the voices of the mother and her son, as well as through a stunning tapestry of collected texts and images--including prior stories of migration and displacement--Lost Children Archive is a story of how we document our experiences, and how we remember the things that matter to us the most. Blending the personal and the political with astonishing empathy, it is a powerful, wholly original work of fiction: exquisite, provocative, and deeply moving.

Title:Lost Children Archive

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    Some Testimonial About This Book:

  • Meike

    Nominated for the Women's Prize for Fiction 2019 Unfortunately, this novel illustrates the difference between well-intentioned and well executed: Luiselli writes about the plight of migrants trying to...

  • Paul Fulcher

    Longlisted for the 2019 Women's Prize and a strong contender to winWhenever the boy and girl talk about child refugees, I realize now, they call them “the lost children.”I suppose the word “refu...

  • Eric Anderson

    “Lost Children Archive” must have one of the most unusual structures for a novel that I’ve read in a long time. It seems natural that Valeria Luiselli’s first novel written in English would ch...

  • Perry

    Marvelous, if not plagued by familiar MFA-grad maladyExcellently written, thought-provoking [3.8*] tale about deported (and lost) children. The narrative goes between a 30-something woman and her 10-y...

  • Sam

    Luiselli changes her narrator halfway through this novel and that change made the difference in my appreciation of the novel. The author strains a little at times but overall this was a bold attempt....

  • Stephanie Jane (Literary Flits)

    See more of my book reviews on my blog, Literary FlitsAfter almost completely immersing myself in Lost Children Archive over three days and loving every single minute of Luiselli's atmospheric novel, ...

  • Hugh

    Longlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction 2019This is my new favourite book of the year so far - an original, daring and timely story inspired by the experiences of desperate children crossing the ...

  • Collin

    LONGLISTED FOR THE 2019 WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTIONThis novel is not one but two narratives. The first narrative is the story of a family travelling to the Apacheria, where the father hopes to record an...

  • Kasa Cotugno

    One of my favorite books of this or any other year. This epic is told against the backdrop of the current humanitarian nightmare of parent/child separations at the border, of the inexplicable and inde...

  • Neil

    This is one of those books where the reader (at least, THIS reader), because of the subject matter, feels a certain pressure to like the book and post positive comments about it. We are reading about ...