Boy of the Border (Hardcover)

By Arna Bontemps, Langston Hughes, Antonio Castro L (Illustrator)

Sweet Earth Flying Press, LLC, 9780979098703, 109pp.

Publication Date: December 1, 2009



Penned by two of the most famous African American writers of the 1930s, this never-before-published coming-of-age story chronicles the adventures of a 12-year-old Mexican boy, Miguel Del Monte, who joins his uncle in herding wild broncos from northern Mexico to Los Angeles. Set against the backdrop of the Mexican Revolution, this historic tale follows Miguel as he embarks on this unexpected trip across the American Southwest desert, determined to prove himself brave and smart enough to deal with the anticipated hardships. Along with a close encounter with roving bandits and the dangerous forces of nature, Miguel has bittersweet interactions with people of diverse racial and cultural groups, learning important lessons along the way. Separated into concise episodes and reflecting the beauty of various peoples, this collection depicts the power of tolerance and multicultural inclusion.

About the Author

Arna Bontemps was a highly regarded poet and novelist during the Harlem Renaissance. He is the author of "The Story of the Negro," which was a Newbery Honor Book and received the Jane Addams Book Award. Langston Hughes was a prolific poet, novelist, short story writer, playwright, journalist, and author of children's books. He was a leading figure in the Harlem Renaissance and the author of "The Best of Simple," "Not Without Laughter," and "The Ways of White Folks." They are the coauthors of "The Pasteboard Bandit" and "Popo and Fifina." Antonio Castro L. is the illustrator of "The Green Bird," "The Gum-Chewing Rattler," and "The Treasure on Gold Street." His work has been featured in museums and galleries in the United States, Mexico, Spain, and Italy. He lives in El Paso, Texas.

Praise For Boy of the Border

"Readers . . . .will find that Miguel's adventures move briskly . . . Each chapter includes a carefully research illustration. A period piece of particular interest to those who want to know more about the time and place."  School Library Journal

This first-ever publication uncovers a riveting adventure story that will engage children and adults alike.”  Sonia Sanchez, author, Homegirls and Handgrenades

[Hughes's] fiction . . . manifests his wonder of the world.’ As these stories reveal, that wonder has lost little of its shine.”  Cleveland Plain Dealer

We are blessed to have this story as a testament to a time when the border between the United States and Mexico was kinder, less populated, and more open.”  Ben Saenz, award-winning novelist

"This beautiful story will enchant and inform children even as it also gives a fresh appreciation of the literary magic of Langston Hughes and Arna Bontemps."  Dr. Arnold Rampersad, Langston Hughes biographer, Langston Hughes: Short Stories