The Long Beach Public Library and the Friends of the Long Beach Public Library will welcome acclaimed Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and best-selling author Sonia Nazario as the featured speaker of the Friends’ Blanche Collins Forum as she discusses the true story behind her book Enrique’s Journey at 2pm on Saturday, March 15 in the Main Library Auditorium, 101 Pacific Ave.
In 2003, the Los Angeles Times featured a story of a Honduran boy’s struggle traveling alone from Honduras in order to find his mother in the United States. Nazario spent nearly five years reporting and writing about Enrique’s journey by retracing his harrowing travels from Honduras to the U.S. This included thousands of miles stowed away on the freight trains El Tren de la Muerte heading north through Mexico.
Nazario won more than a dozen awards for the series, among them the Pulitzer Prize for Feature Writing. Expanded into a book, Enrique’s Journey became a national bestseller translated into eight languages.
Apostrophe Books will be on-site at the event to provide books for purchase. Nazario will be available to sign copies of her book at the conclusion of the program.
The auditorium doors will open at 1:30pm, and the event is free. Parking is available in the Civic Center parking structure at the corner of Broadway and Chestnut Avenue. Parking is free for the first 30 minutes and $1.75 for the next 90 minutes with library validation. The maximum cost is $10. Nearby parking is also available.
Nazario, who grew up in Kansas and Argentina, has written extensively about Latinos in the United States. She has spent 20 years reporting and writing about social issues. She won a George Polk Award for Local Reporting for a series about hunger among schoolchildren in California. In 1998, she was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for a series on children of drug-addicted parents. Hispanic Business Magazine has named her among the most influential Latinos and Hispanic Magazine called her a “trendsetter.” In 2012, Nazario was listed among Columbia Journalism Review’s “40 Women Who Changed the Media Business in the Past Forty Years.” Nazario serves on immigration advocacy boards, including Kids In Need of Defense (KIND), a nonprofit launched by Microsoft and actress Angelina Jolie to provide pro-bono attorneys to unaccompanied immigrant children.