Books in English


(Translated from the Spanish original by Elwin Wirkala)

  Award winner in “Books into Movies” (2013)

The Encounter won second place in the 3rd edition of Books into Movies Award, the prestigious Latino books Logoorganization sponsored by Latino Literacy Now. The award-winning books were presented to major movie studios and producers.

The Encounter  weaves a story of adventure, romance, immigration and the social realities of Latin America, beginning with the infamous dumping of toxic waste into the pristine Amazonian jungles of Ecuador by the Texaco oil company. While describing the origins of this crime, The Encounter is also the story of Rosa and Ernesto’s search for cultural and individual identity. 

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Review  from El cultural, by Carmen Blazquez (El mundo, Madrid, 07/10/11)

⃰  ⃰  ⃰  ⃰  ⃰    10/07/2011,  El Cultural (Diario El Mundo, Madrid)

cover_encounter small pict“Rite of passage travelogue, social criticism, denunciation of environmental disaster, these are some facets of this ambitious novel. The protagonists, developed on a double plot structure, are Ernesto, a mestizo youth adopted by a Spanish couple residing in San Diego, and Rosa, a Huaorani girl from Ecuador. The symmetries and vicissitudes experienced by each are interwoven in a narrative that brings them together for just one meeting on a single fleeting, splendid day. Ernesto travels from north to south in search of his origins, but what he finds is redemption for his adoptive father, who is implicated in the pollution of the rain forest. Rosa, for her part, leaves Amazonia behind and sets off northward in response to a call from her ailing mother, who immigrated, years before, to Oregon.
Both itineraries, with attractive and convincing characters as center of gravity, inspire passion.”

Review from “The Pirate Tree” 


When paths cross even briefly, our lives can change in surprising and important ways. For Ernesto, a mestizo youth adopted by a Spanish couple living in San Diego, and Rosa, a Huaorani girl from Ecuador, coming together for a single day leads to redemption and understanding. This novel takes readers on a journey that begins with Ernesto searching for his birth family to discover that his own rite of passage will weave together with a story of environmental disaster and reveal social and family issues that include finding the truth, seeking solutions and loving the imperfect people in our lives.In a parallel journey, Rosa leaves the Amazonia behind and sets off northward in response to a call from her ailing mother. The author portrays these characters with understanding and sympathy.
Rita Wirkala is an Argentine bilingual writer and a professor at the University of Washington. Her work has been published in Europe and the United States, and acclaimed by a major Spanish language newspaper. She writes young adult novels in Spanish and English, poetry, literary essays and school and homeschool textbooks. She is also a translator of children’s books, and composer of children’s songs, and the founder of All Bilingual Press.

The Encounter (ABP)Rita Wirkala $15ABP