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American Dirt


"American Dirt is a Grapes of Wrath for our times."
—Don Winslow
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Discuss American Dirt by Jeanine Cummins:
Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

Created: 02/06/20

Replies: 18

Posted Feb. 06, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 2225

Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?


Posted Feb. 08, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
dawng

Join Date: 02/08/20

Posts: 7

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

For me, the scenes at the beginning of the book where the whole family was slain while they were in the house were almost too much to read. Can you imagine what that must be like? And, the aftermath of knowing that because your son had to go to the bathroom was the only reason that you both were alive! And, then knowing that because of the situation you had to leave all of your loved ones there and immediately flee the area.....too much for anyone to handle!


Posted Feb. 09, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
susanr

Join Date: 04/14/11

Posts: 139

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

The chapter where Lydia and Lucas got on a train for the first time was memorable. They finally found a way to travel but it was so dangerous and Lydia had to decide whether it was worth the danger. I was so scared for them when they decided to jump on the train.


Posted Feb. 09, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
melanieb

Join Date: 08/30/14

Posts: 203

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

I didn’t find any one scene particularly memorable. The entire novel was suspenseful and fast-paced with all the various events weighing in as memorable.


Posted Feb. 09, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
peggyt

Join Date: 08/10/17

Posts: 143

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

The first couple of times they got on the train were heart in throat moments. Then they got used to it and so did I.


Posted Feb. 09, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
sharonj

Join Date: 01/26/17

Posts: 20

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

There were many scary and memorable storylines but the time they became separated from the group when Luca had a blister stayed with me. After being confronted and surviving such overt horror of potentially getting lost was palpable for me.


Posted Feb. 10, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
acstrine

Join Date: 02/06/17

Posts: 225

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

Soledad made her decision to leave her home and her family after her "boyfriend" (I am using that term loosely) demanded that she bring her younger sister to him. In order to protect her sister from rape, Soledad set off on a 1000+ mile journey. I was devastated when Rebecca was most likely gang raped by the Federal Police after they stopped the train and chased the migrants. Soledad's goal had been to save her sister from sexual violence, and in her attempt, her sister became a victim anyway. This broke my heart.


Posted Feb. 10, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Andrea

Join Date: 08/31/18

Posts: 22

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

The most memorable scenes for me involved the canyon walk with El Chacal. My reactions to the events ranged from cries of frustrated sorrow to cries of righteous joy.


Posted Feb. 10, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
katherinep

Join Date: 07/16/14

Posts: 235

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

Not really--there were moments of suspense, like jumping on the train, the girls taken apart from the rest, the horrible massacre at the beginning but the rest of the book plodded along like the walks on the tracks or the dusty roads


Posted Feb. 10, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Navy Mom

Join Date: 04/12/12

Posts: 221

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

I thought the most powerful point of the book was when Luca would not leave without Rebeca and Soledad. When Lydia was so frightened and just wanted to leave the office and get away, and Luca stood his ground and demanded they also come with him. Some of that strength came from inexperience but it was just the right thing to do.


Posted Feb. 11, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
cathyoc

Join Date: 04/26/17

Posts: 98

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

I thought the friendship between Lydia, Luca and Soledad and Rebecca was the heart of the story. In the midst of terror and chaos after both pairs loosing their families, these four come together to form a new family. The many kindnesses, big and small that they provide to each other speak to the resilience and goodness of the human spirit.


Posted Feb. 14, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
marks

Join Date: 02/25/19

Posts: 30

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

I loved the entire book, but I was particularly fond of Lydia's final conversation with Javier. I wished she could do more than throw the phone, but I found myself smiling as she did. Seemed like a culminating moment for someone who endured unspeakable tragedy but is still fighting to move forward.


Posted Feb. 15, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
joannew

Join Date: 07/08/17

Posts: 9

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

The scenes with them on top of the moving trains were very vivid to me. I also enjoyed her early meetings in the bookstore with Javier. We are all susceptible to the charm of a dangerous person.


Posted Feb. 15, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
angelakuemmel

Join Date: 03/11/15

Posts: 10

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

The scene where she took Lucas to her college library back in Mexico City and she is flooded with memories of Sebastian and thinks how much she'd always wanted to bring Luca there just not under those circumstances


Posted Feb. 16, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Carol Rainer

Join Date: 09/03/15

Posts: 89

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

At the beginning of the book, when Lydia and her son were hiding in the bathroom after the massacre, one of the killers, after urinating, washed his hands. That has stayed with me!


Posted Feb. 22, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
windellh

Join Date: 11/05/17

Posts: 36

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

The desert scenes near the end were memorable. This shows the power of the human spirit and the will to succeed.


Posted Mar. 07, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
sheyc

Join Date: 02/17/20

Posts: 5

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

The scene that stands out the most to me was the beautiful display between Lydia and Paola (the bank teller). Lydia had told her sorry twice at that point to individuals that are trained to work with and help migrants and she did so almost mechanically, displaying very little emotion. The scene with Paola, both ladies break down. I thought it was so beautiful and heartbreaking these two women sharing their experience of violence at the hands of the cartel.


Posted Mar. 18, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
beckyh

Join Date: 05/08/11

Posts: 98

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

The one scene that has stayed with me (I read the book nearly a month ago) is when Lydia and Luca are sitting on the edge of the bridge waiting to jump on the top of a train. As a mother I was imagining all the things that could and probably would go wrong just as Lydia was was. I thought that was the point when Lydia became a "migrant" - forced into an untenable situation by circumstances outside her control (or that she herself might have caused by her failure to think things through!).


Posted Mar. 25, 2020 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
taking.mytime's Gravatar
taking.mytime

Join Date: 03/29/16

Posts: 169

RE: Was there any scene in particular in the novel that struck a chord with you, or that you found especially memorable?

It has been some time since I read this book, so forgive me if I misplace facts or names.

The opening scene where Lydia is hiding Luca in the tub to prevent him from being killed is still vivid in my mind.

Also the fact that they young boy traveling alone died in the final steps of the trip across the desert. He was so close to freedom and had traveled so far with such courage.


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