Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Personal tools

Navigation

Magical Realism for Non-Believers

A Memoir of Finding Family

2019
Author:

Anika Fajardo

Magical Realism for Non-Believers

BOOK DISCUSSION GUIDE

 

A young woman from Minnesota searches out the Colombian father she’s never known in this powerful exploration of what family really means

In 1995, Anika Fajardo flew to Colombia to discover a birthplace that was foreign to her and a father who was a stranger. Vivid and heartfelt in the telling, Fajardo’s story is powerfully compelling in its bridging of time and place and in its moving depiction of self-transformation. Family, she comes to find, is where you find it and what you make of it.  

"Incredibly well written and compelling, Anika Fajardo’s Magical Realism for Non-Believers is a remarkable memoir about the search for a father, a culture, a self. I felt like I was reading about my own life and the price I paid for assimilation and acculturation. I simply couldn’t put it down."—Pablo Medina, author of The Island Kingdom and Cubop City Blues

Magical Realism for Non-Believers

Anika Fajardo was born in Colombia and raised in Minnesota. Her writing has been published in the anthologies Brief Encounters: A Collection of Contemporary Nonfiction and Sky Blue Water: Great Stories for Young Readers (Minnesota, 2016). She has earned awards from the Jerome Foundation, the Minnesota State Arts Board, and the Loft Literary Center. The manuscript for Magical Realism for Non-Believers was a finalist for the Bakeless Literary Prize in Creative Nonfiction. She lives in Minneapolis.

Magical Realism for Non-Believers

Incredibly well written and compelling, Anika Fajardo’s Magical Realism for Non-Believers is a remarkable memoir about the search for a father, a culture, a self. I felt like I was reading about my own life and the price I paid for assimilation and acculturation. I simply couldn’t put it down.

Pablo Medina, author of The Island Kingdom and Cubop City Blues

Bicultural experience is a dispassionate term for life lived across borders, identities, and even family trees. As Anika Fajardo makes clear in this searching and lyrical memoir, there is nothing dispassionate about flying back to one’s birthland, walking its soil again, or breaking bread with family who have become as good as strangers. Fajardo seeks to reconnect these missing and scattered pieces, and it is a privilege to journey beside her.

Lila Quintero Weaver, author of Darkroom: A Memoir in Black and White

A rare read, you know the kind: you don’t want it to end but you can’t put it down. Bewitching and beautiful, bound to move anyone who was ever a parent or a child, and just as compelling (and magical) the second time around.

Dinah Lenney, author of The Object Parade

A forthright and sensitive tale of a daughter's quest.

Kirkus Reviews

Fajardo revisits interactions and places with intricately remembered emotion, making for a delicious dive into the complicated, beautiful messes that love can make.

Booklist

Fajardo describes the pain of yearning for something you can't quite articulate, of getting what you thought you wanted and finding it less than satisfying. She dives into her family's past and continues her story into her own adulthood, laying bare the many complicated ways our family informs who we are and how we interact with the world.

BuzzFeed

Anika Fajardo’s beautifully written memoir is a full, satisfying read.

Star Tribune

Anika Fajardo has written a wonderful, sensitive and compelling memoir about her journey to forge a relationship with the father she never knew. She uses her talents to spin a tale that could have been fiction but is all the more special because it is all true.

I Am Book Minded