title. mujer rota
city. norfolk, va
size. collage 10in x 7in
Set in the mid 1970s through 1990s, my novel Landings explores issues of family trauma, migration, and cultural identity against the backdrop of Colombia’s decline into civil war and the British punk movement.
Landings follows 18 year old Minerva and her Colombian family. After growing up in a coastal Colombian town, she immigrates to the United Kingdom and finds herself swimming upstream against Britain’s economic upheaval and the resulting rise in xenophobia. As an antidote to her alienation, Minerva submerges herself in the budding punk scene, with her imagined guide, David Bowie. Afflicted with excoriation disorder, Minerva performs a kind of “autocartography,” mapping her own infected skin as well as her movements through two countries. Back in Colombia, Minerva’s loyal childhood friend Juan, crushed by Minerva’s sudden departure, abandons his failing academic career in Bogotá and joins a guerrilla group in the Colombian highlands. Fifteen years later, Minerva’s half-sister, Pamela, sick of life in the Florida swamplands, finds an opportunity for adventure when her father lets slip Minerva’s existence. However, in traveling back to Colombia, she finds more than she bargained for. At its heart, this book is about young people in the throes of personal and global change.