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Cover
Mañana Means Heaven
By Tim Z. Hernandez
240 pp. / 6.00 x 9.00 / 2013
Cloth (978-0-8165-3035-9)
  
Series
  - Camino del Sol

Related Interest
  - Latina and Latino Studies
  - Fiction


In this love story of impossible odds, award-winning writer Tim Z. Hernandez weaves a rich and visionary portrait of Bea Franco, the real woman behind famed American author Jack Kerouac's "The Mexican
Hernandez's choice to write [Bea's] story as fiction is gutsy, inspired, and does honor to Kerouac, who fictionalized the real-life characters he met in On The Road. The result is an earthy and soulful tale, a version of their improbable love affair that feels as true as Kerouac's.

—Catch & Release

Hernandez gives incredible depth and dimensionality to the love story of Jack Kerouac and Bea Franco.

—Los Angeles Review of Books

Hernandez's intimate knowledge of life amid the agricultural fields of central California and his ability to conjure the thoughts and emotions of the young Bea Franco make for a graceful and melancholy tale.

—The Associated Press

A beautifully realized portrait of Bea Franco.

—The Los Angeles Times

This novel will thrill the millions of readers who have read Kerouac's book and/or seen the movie adaptation. But no prior knowledge of Kerouac or his works is required: this is an entirely fascinating, stand-alone story in its own right.

—Booklist

Hernandez's portrayal offers a telling counterpoint to Kerouac's rendering, reclaiming Franco's agency and offering a depth and insight into her circumstances and the life of women like her who, both on the page and in everyday life, are too often consigned to anonymity.

—Zyzzyva

Whether or not you are a Kerouac fan, Tim Z. Hernandez has created an important entry for the Kerouac canon that also stands on its own merits as a well-crafted novel about love and loss. Bravo.

—Rick Dale, The Daily Beat

There is no other novel like this in American publishing—Bea Franco's story and her relationship with Jack Kerouac are vital, compelling, and absolutely necessary. Central California, with its history of immigration and agriculture, along with labor camps and workers, is a landscape presented in a different way here, and the women in these places are exactly the characters America desperately needs right now. They are all created in a singular way here.

—Susan Straight, author of Between Heaven and Here and Highwire Moon

Girl." Set against an ominous backdrop of California in the 1940s, deep in the agricultural heartland of the Great Central Valley, Mañana Means Heaven reveals the desperate circumstances that lead a married woman to an illicit affair with an aspiring young writer traveling across the United States.

When they meet, Franco is a migrant farmworker with two children and a failing marriage, living with poverty, violence, and the looming threat of deportation, while the "college boy" yearns to one day make a name for himself in the writing world. The significance of their romance poses vastly different possibilities and consequences.

Mañana Means Heaven deftly combines fact and fiction to pull back the veil on one of literature's most mysterious and evocative characters. Inspired by Franco's love letters to Kerouac and Hernandez's interviews with Franco, now in her nineties and living in relative obscurity, the novel brings this lost gem of a story out of the shadows and into the spotlight.

Learn more at www.timzhernandez.com.


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