Saturday, June 18, 2022

Sergio Troncoso on Nobody's Pilgrims

Nobody's Pilgrims is my latest novel, an adventure story about three seventeen-year-old teenagers (Turi, Arnulfo, and Molly) who find each other and believe in each other, as evil pursues them across the United States. A novel that somewhat predicted the pandemic, Nobody's Pilgrims is set in a dystopian America where grit, intelligence, luck, and love are needed to survive. Here's a brief talk I did on YouTube on the main themes of Nobody's Pilgrims (Lee & Low Books). I hope you enjoy it.

 

https://youtu.be/X6thIoAgq3I

Saturday, June 11, 2022

Diverse Voices Book Review on Nobody's Pilgrims

Thank you Hopeton Hay for interviewing me about Nobody's Pilgrims for Diverse Voices Book Review. What a great conversation we had! I loved it. These are my favorite conversations to have, with someone who loves books and digs deep into the novel and can appreciate the nuances of the characters and places I write about. So grateful!

 

 https://www.podomatic.com/podcasts/hbhpodcasts/episodes/2022-06-05T05_57_50-07_00

Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Philadelphia's AL DÍA Interviews Sergio Troncoso

 
I'm on the cover AL DÍA, a bilingual magazine from Philadelphia. Thank you!

"NOBODY'S PILGRIMS was written before 20 cases of COVID-19 existed in the U.S., and in a way, the novel predicted the pandemic that was to follow. The pandemic in my novel is transmitted by touch, and I just thought about what would tear apart this country and set us against each other. My answer was a pandemic. The three teenagers, all outsiders, forge a community of three, even as many around them turn against each other. And that’s what the novel is about: how we fight to stay together, how we struggle and succeed in becoming a ‘we,’” he said.
 

Friday, May 13, 2022

Predicting the Pandemic in Nobody’s Pilgrims

My blog post about NOBODY'S PILGRIMS (Cinco Puntos Press: Lee & Low Books):
 
"Can imagination be a window into a possible future? Yes, indeed it can. I wrote my novel, Nobody’s Pilgrims, before twenty cases of COVID-19 existed in the United States. I actually turned in the final final draft of my novel to my publisher, Cinco Puntos Press, on leap day, February 29, 2020. Moreover, most of the novel had been written even earlier. And what was the novel about? Three runaway teenagers, Turi, Arnulfo, and Molly, pursued by evil people across a dystopian United States collapsing because of a pandemic."

 

Wednesday, May 4, 2022

Somos En Escrito Interviews Sergio Troncoso

The editors of Somos En Escrito --Armando Rendon, Jenny Irizary, and Scott Duncan Fernandez--
interview Sergio Troncoso about his trajectory as a writer, Chicano literature and the morphing of its readership, changing organizations like the Texas Institute of Letters, and his new novel, Nobody's Pilgrims (Lee & Low Books: Cinco Puntos Press).

Sergio Troncoso: "The novel is about the grit and intelligence and luck of these three teenagers, Turi, Arnulfo, and Molly. They are all people who are ignored, los de abajo. They are working class, or even worse. They find each other, and they don't belong anywhere else. They belong with each other, but not with anyone else. And as things start falling apart, they have to find solutions.... The novel is about creating that togetherness within this small group that maybe we don't have or are losing in this country, how we belong together when we go through very difficult trials."

 

 

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

El Paso Matters Interviews Sergio Troncoso

"I was a poor kid growing up in Ysleta, and the El Paso Public Library was the place where I found my
sanctuary. I found the peace and quiet to concentrate my mind, and I could go and pick up books for free and read to my heart’s content. The public library was so central to my early education and to expanding what I learned in grade school and high school....

At a meeting, the El Paso City Council voted unanimously to rename the branch library in Ysleta as the Sergio Troncoso Branch Library. It was one of the proudest moments of my literary life. I had grown up within walking distance from the library. Our family had begun with an outhouse in the backyard and kerosene lamps and stoves in Ysleta. We were as poor as poor can be. But reading, focus, discipline and the Mexican immigrant values of my parents propelled me forward over many years. And I never stopped working to be a literary voice for los de abajo, the underdogs, from Ysleta and El Paso."

https://elpasomatters.org/2022/04/19/texas-literary-giants-gathering-in-el-paso-this-week/

Monday, March 28, 2022

Unboxing of Nobody's Pilgrims, by Sergio Troncoso

My first copies of NOBODY'S PILGRIMS just arrived! I'm very excited for this new 2022 novel about
three teenagers, Turi, Molly, and Arnulfo, on the run from evil and unwittingly carrying even a greater menace in their stolen truck. The border goes beyond the border in a story about who belongs in the United States and how finding your place in this world is about finding the right person to be with you. (Lee & Low Books: Cinco Puntos Press. Publication date: May 10, 2022.)
 
"The castoffs and castaways of Nobody's Pilgrims hit the road in search of the American Dream, a long shot made longer by the pack of human devils hot on their trail. In this superb novel, Sergio Troncoso gives us a fresh take not only on the great American road trip, but on the American Dream itself in all its glorious and increasingly fragile promise. The propulsive force of this novel, and the destination it ultimately brings us to, left me wanting more, and yet feeling completely satisfied. As only the best novels do."
--Ben Fountain, PEN/Hemingway award-winning author of Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk
 
"In a world marked by cruelty, corruption, bigotry and disease, Troncoso shows us there's still room for love. With his finely honed prose style, he takes us on a journey across the country with three young hungry teens whose dreams are the only lifelines they have left. A powerful, compelling read."
--Octavio Solis, author of Retablos: Stories From a Life Lived Along the Border 
 
"Eloquent, bold and terrifying, Nobody's Pilgrims is a fresh new take on the ancient themes of innocence pursued by evil, and of the young finding their way through a chaotic and uncertain world. Turi, Arnulfo and Molly are original and uniquely endearing, and they're a pleasure to travel with, even on such a frightening journey."
--Elizabeth Crook, author of The Which Way Tree
 
"Nobody's Pilgrims offers a stark vision of a country whose social ills have sullied the path to the pursuit of happiness. Yet its intrepid protagonists Turi and Molly persevere, charting their own map and adapting, like generations of dreamers, immigrants, and adventurers before them, to the latest hurdles of our troubled world. Sergio Troncoso has given us a timely dystopian tale heavy with anguish but invigorated by resilience."
--Rigoberto González, author of Butterfly Boy: Memories of a Chicano Mariposa



 

Wednesday, January 5, 2022

Book Riot and Nepantla Familias

Thank you Minerva Laveaga Luna and Book Riot for featuring Nepantla Familias

"The book asks readers from any background, whether they are Mexican American or not, 'to see these writers as individuals, to see the characters they have created not as caricatures, but as complex characters. This book is a call to action to open your minds, to take the time to open your hearts, and to meet in the complex and ever-questioning middle ground of Nepantla.'"

 https://bookriot.com/anthologies-cultural-representation/

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Austin American-Statesman and Nepantla Familias

Thank you Michael Barnes and the Austin American-Statesman for the extensive interview about Nepantla Familias (Texas A&M University Press and The Wittliff Literary Series), "a fantastic anthology of Mexican American literature." This is what I said, among other things:

Austin American Statesman: How can those groups encourage, train and promote fantastic writers like the ones represented in your book?
 
Sergio Troncoso: "By paying attention to them. By reading their work. By promoting them and putting them in positions of power. It's not that complicated.
 
Many literary institutions in Texas, and beyond, have ignored or stereotyped Mexican American writers. "Nepantla Familias" shows the literary talent we have in our community, talent that is winning national and international awards and fellowships, that is selling hundreds of thousands of books, that is being published in places from the New Yorker to Ploughshares to the Yale Review."