When their father's part in a plot against a cruel dictator forces them to flee the Dominican Republic, the Garcia sisters--Carla, Sandra, Yolanda, and Sofia--come to America. But 1960s New York City is vastly different from the genteel, if troubling, existence they left behind, a world marked by maids, manicures, a loving family, and disappearances, secret police raids, growing political unrest What the sisters have lost--and what they find--is revealed in this exquisite novel from one of the premier novelists of our time.
In America, the Garcia girls try to assimilate into the mainstream by ironing their hair, forgetting their Spanish, and meeting boys unchaperoned. Through it all, they remain caught between the old world and the new. With zestful humor and rare insight, Julia Alvarez evokes the uncertainties and joys of belonging to two distinct cultures in a buoyant novel full of irrepressible spirit.