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American Like Me: Reflections on Life Between Cultures

4.40  ·  Rating details ·  780 ratings  ·  137 reviews
From award-winning actress and political activist America Ferrera comes a vibrant and varied collection of first-person accounts from prominent figures about the experience of growing up between cultures.

America Ferrera has always felt wholly American, and yet, her identity is inextricably linked to her parents’ homeland and Honduran culture. Speaking Spanish at home, havi
Kindle Edition, 337 pages
Published September 25th 2018 by Gallery Books
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Sachi Argabright
Sep 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Please stop whatever you’re doing and buy this book! I knew it would be right up my alley, but this book greatly exceeded my expectations. I was blown away by most of the essays, and was able to relate so closely to their themes. As person of mixed race who was raised by a Japanese immigrant, I was so pleased to see so many of my experiences reflected on the pages of this book. There were so many little things that resonated with me too such as Reshma Saujani talking about using an “easier” fake ...more
Amanda Peña
Oct 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“But what ARE you?!”

As someone who’s grown up, especially as a child, not knowing exactly what to tell people when they ask where I’m from after I say, “Here?” or “My family is from Texas, they’ve always been from Texas..” I’m just American, right? “But you look Mexican!”

Do I?

This book showcases pretty heartwarming accounts about what its like growing up in America and not always feeling American, and learning to love yourself and where you came from. Whether you started out here, or found your
I laughed, I cried!
Nov 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Phenomenal collection of vignettes from children of immigrants that are at turns familiar and fresh, rib-tickling and eye-opening. Highly recommend.

America: yes, denied sleepovers (but justly so)!

Reshma: yes, denied custom name keychains! Glad she didn’t change her name when she entered politics. Honestly, if there is a ballot with names I don’t know on an issue I don’t care about, I vote for the foreign name first, woman second, then just pick whichever name I’ve seen on the lawns on my neighb
Oct 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is utterly compelling, and came at quite literally the perfect time in our American history. I think this is not only an IMPORTANT book, but a NEEDED one.

As things begin to change and move forward in our country (hopefully for the better!), there will understandably be some resistance: change can be frightening. But we can't let that small minority paralyze the rest of us.

I think this book will stand the test of time, and hopefully will serve to enlighten and galvanize people to realiz
Nov 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
One of the most effective small things we cis white people in the United States can do is to read other people's stories with curiosity, veracity, love, and gratitude. And do it over and over, for as long as we can read or listen.
Madeline O'Rourke
American Like Me is a wonderful collection of diverse stories centred around the mixing of cultures, oftentimes through immigration.

I really was impressed by the variety of authors. Though they're all famous in some way, there are actors, singers, politicians, activists, and more; and on top of that, they all come from a variety of cultural backgrounds—including some Native Americans, which I thought was cool. Amongst the essays, there's a lot of divergence, too. Some short, some long; some funn
Nov 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
America Ferrera has put together an earnest, honest, powerful, and brilliant collection of personal essays and stories.
I am not sure a book has ever filled my heart so much. So much hope. So much radical love. So much pride in what being an American can mean. So much appreciation of the differences that make up our collective we, and the strength it gives us all as individuals when we come together as a community to share those differences.
Oct 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorite-books
I haven’t written a review in a while, but I’m in tears and this book was one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever read.

Every single essay in this compilation is incredibly important and carries so much power with it. I never wanted it to end. Please, please go get a copy!
Gloria Mackay
Dec 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Such an emotional journey for both the writers and the reader.
Oct 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
We have people coming into the country, or trying to come in — and we're stopping a lot of them — but we're taking people out of the country. You wouldn't believe how bad these people are. These aren't people. These are animals. And we're taking them out of the country at a level and at a rate that's never happened before. And because of the weak laws, they come in fast, we get them, we release them, we get them again, we bring them out. It's crazy.
President Trump

American did not cherry-pick her
Alexandra Council
Nov 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018-books
“American Like Me: Reflections on Life Between Cultures” takes a close look at personal stories from writers, actors and actresses, comedians, athletes, politicians and more, about life between cultures. Some of the 31 authors were born in the U.S., others came to the U.S. at 10 years old, and others had multiple generations before them as U.S. citizens. But each of these authors share some semblance of one thing: trying to find themselves in two, or three, or more, cultures.

America Ferrera, who
Abby Johnson
Oct 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
This collection features essays from many different Americans across many different cultures and identities. It includes actors and actresses as well as sports figures, authors, activists, and more. Topics vary from serious to lighthearted, so there's something for everyone here. I wish it had been published in a smaller format - the large format seems unnecessarily to me and I think it'd have a greater chance at teen crossover appeal if it had the dimensions of a typical book.

Come for your fav
Oct 11, 2018 added it
Not to be all "I couldn't put it down!" but I couldn't put it down. As a white, third-generation non-American, I definitely wasn't the target demographic, but there were still so many moments and emotions that rang true to my life and experiences. It gave me so much to think about regarding parent-child relationships, passing down (or not passing down) language and culture, the childhood importance of fitting in, and what it means to self-identify based on your cultural upbringing. Reshma's, Ame ...more
Amanda Kingston
Oct 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2018
“I think stories and songs come to us at different points in our lives. I will believe they are told and sung in different ways to reflect the mirror we need to look into. I carry many stories and songs.”
“Under the description for the purpose of her visit are scrawled the words: to live.”
This is a must-read, a collection of 32 short essays of living between cultures in America, that will make you laugh and also ugly-cry at the beauty and grief and life in these stories. More than anything
Oct 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
What a fitting collection of essays for 2018. Some essays were stronger than others. Despite that, I think all of the voices featured in this collection deserve to be heard. It is important to understand the American experience from ALL types of American voices. This is a book that helps steer a more empathetic conversation about what it means to be an American.
Oct 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018, nonfiction
A beautiful book that I look forward to having on my own shelves and watching my between-cultures girls discover as they get older. All the essays moved me, but particularly Tanaya Winder and Martin Sensmeier (both writing from a Native perspective), and Uzo Aduba (a Nigerian-American).
Nov 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
I found my own unrepresented story intertwined in the stories told in the book. There were moments of levity among moments of pain and triumph. It was a good mix and it was exciting reading about people I personally admire that are not highlighted in the mainstream public (Carmen Carrera).
Audi Chastain
Oct 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book so much I’m sad I finished. Incredible.
Punam Sachdev
Oct 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shed a few tears reading this book. Wish I had reflected more on the various immigrant/child of immigrants experiences as I was growing up...didn’t realize until much later how we were all writing our own chapters for ourselves and the next generation...and how different families added their own unique tales with experiences so different from yet so similar to my own. Thank you, America Ferrara for putting this together 🙏🏾
Meg Marie
Nov 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
So many great perspectives and touching, sometimes funny stories. It's a great collection of voices and a reminder of who this country can be.
Oct 17, 2018 rated it liked it
I love the IDEA of this book. In practice, many of the pieces are beautifully rendered and emotionally rich, but too many are just not very well written which affects their message. I think I may have enjoyed this book better in audiobook form or if I read it over a longer period of time (like 1 essay per week). Spoiler: America Ferrera is amazing.
Sep 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: september
"I invited my friends, peers, and heroes to share their stories in this book so that we might build community; so that we could ientify our whole selves within a larger culture that tends to leave important pieces of our stories out; so that our voices would amplify one another's as we declare who we actually are. We are kids with no key chains, daughters carrying history in the gaps of our teeth. We are the sons of parents who don't speak of the past, inheritors of warriors' blood and mad barga ...more
Samarth Gupta
Dec 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
A great coffee table book. Some essays really resonated with me.

"Maybe they didn't want me to blend in as much as I thought. They blended in so I wouldn't have to. They paid the ultimate price for my authenticity. They gave up their community, their careers, their language, their own names. These were the steep taxes they paid to make a better life for me. Assimilating in the ways my parents did can invite accusations. Changing your name and hiding your accent could be seen as passive or fearfu
Nov 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review was originally posted on Latte Nights Reviews.

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Wow, I love this book. It's a collection of essays edited by America Ferrera about living between cultures. The essays are written by activists, actors, politicians, writers, and so many others. This book had so many diverse stories; not only were the essays by individuals from different cultures, but fro

Brooke Everett
Dec 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: EVERYONE
Recommended to Brooke by: Sanzida Chowdhury
Powerful and essential. Everyone should read this collection of essays immediately! With so many of my favorites in the mix - Padma, Issa, Kumail, Uzo, Roxane - I knew I was going to love it. These voices and their histories ARE what makes America great.

There's a common thread that's pretty much unanimous throughout: strong, supportive parents and families.

Reshma Saujani: "I was beginning to learn that bravery is like a muscle, and once you flex it, you can't stop. And being authentic requires
Oct 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018challenge
It's odd, these days, to encounter writing that is so un-cynical about America. With rare exceptions, the stories in this book are overwhelmingly positive - story after story expressing gratitude towards hardworking immigrant parents, telling of success despite the odds, people living their dreams.

This feels like a young adult book, an impression that is strengthened by the photos of the contributors as children. It's not a bad thing, although I do wish someone had edited out a few instances of
Nov 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I won a copy of this book from a Goodreads giveaway (my first win!) and I am so thankful for it because this book of essays was amazing. As someone who also identifies as being "in between cultures", I enjoyed all the various essays that allowed me to take a glimpse into the lives of others that were similar to me. Similar in that regardless of where you or your parents came from, we all have stories about our culture and experiences as an American. And those personal anecdotes spoke to me so pr ...more
In such a divided state of affairs that the country is in right now, this collection of essays (and amazing women like America Ferrera) gives me the hope that we as Americans are still capable to change. Can strive for better and can eliminate hate and fear. I learned so much from the vast array of contributors about their culture growing up- why they felt they couldn’t truly be who they were and at the same time, be American- as well as the struggles and brave sacrifices that their ancestors
Barbara Tarnay
Oct 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
I wasn't sure what the tone of this book would be given the deep divide in our country. I was very pleased that the tone of the essays were very positive. I think most Americans faced some them vs us at the time of immigration, regardless of when they immigrated. Sadly, many people forgot what it was like to be the new kid on the block leaving a not great situation in their homeland to move to a land with endless possibilities but no guarantees. Still, an improvement over no possibilities. These ...more
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Goodreads Librari...: Title/Author Feed on Bookpage 2 11 Aug 28, 2018 09:08AM  
America Ferrera is an award-winning actress, producer, director and activist. Ferrera is best known for her breakthrough role as “Betty Suarez” on ABC’s hit comedy, Ugly Betty, for which she won Golden Globe, Emmy, Screen Actors Guild, ALMA, and Imagen Awards. She produces and stars in the acclaimed NBC workplace comedy, Superstore, currently in its fourth season. In 2016 Ferrera cofounded HARNESS ...more