This year’s authors represent rising stars from all genres. Since the publication of this list back in 2017, Javier Zamora has become a household name among literary circles, Carlos Hernandez has penned another popular book, and Ivelisse Rodriguez has earned the distinction of being a nominee for the Pen/Faulkner Award.
1. Carlos Hernandez, the author of The Assimilated Cuban’s Guide to Quantum Santeria, a devilishly witty debut science-fiction collection that will make you laugh out loud while making you pause and ponder.
2. Carmen Maria Machado’s debut short story collection, Her Body and Other Parties: Stories, denies classification in so many ways. It is an absolutely daring and delightful work not to be missed.
3. Alexandra Lytton Regalado: The author of Matria and the winner of the Black Lawrence Book Award, Regalado has a gift for creating powerful images that cannot leave the reader’s mind.
4. Lilliam Rivera’s The Education of Margot Sanchez is one of those novels that is meant for the YA audience but everyone will love. The characters have their own personal flaws, yet they are all appealing.
5. Erika L. Sanchez’s I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter is the ideal book for teen readers looking for a well-written novel about growing up in families with strict expectations.
6. Li Yun Alvarado: This talented writer’s Words or Water is distinctly Nuyorican and distinctly musical as poems dance throughout the pages in creative and thoughtful ways.
7. Leticia Hernandez Linares: The author who brought us the poetry collection, Mucha Muchacha, Too Much Girl: Poems also co-edited (with Hector Tobar and Juan Jose Dalton) the pioneering anthology, The Wandering Song, the first major collection of Central American writing in the U.S.
8. Ivelisse Rodriguez. Her chapbook, The Belindas, and her forthcoming short story collection, Love War Stories reflect how when an author’s writing is hot, it’s hot. Her stories are gritty, smart, and not to be missed.
9. Javier Zamora’s Unaccompanied is a touching, powerful poetry collection based on the author’s incredible journey as he crossed the U.S. border at nine years of age from El Salvador.
10. Pablo Cartaya’s The Epic Fail of Arturo Zamora is an epic first novel that features a young character who is so likable and appealing that you’ll want to keep turning the pages.