A Wedding in Haiti

A Wedding in Haiti

Julia Alvarez / Feb 17, 2020

A Wedding in Haiti In a story that travels beyond borders and between families acclaimed Dominican novelist and poet Julia Alvarez reflects on the joys and burdens of love for her parents for her husband and for a yo

  • Title: A Wedding in Haiti
  • Author: Julia Alvarez
  • ISBN: 9781616201302
  • Page: 441
  • Format: Hardcover
  • In a story that travels beyond borders and between families, acclaimed Dominican novelist and poet Julia Alvarez reflects on the joys and burdens of love for her parents, for her husband, and for a young Haitian boy known as Piti In this intimate true account of a promise kept, Alvarez takes us on a journey into experiences that challenge our way of thinking about historyIn a story that travels beyond borders and between families, acclaimed Dominican novelist and poet Julia Alvarez reflects on the joys and burdens of love for her parents, for her husband, and for a young Haitian boy known as Piti In this intimate true account of a promise kept, Alvarez takes us on a journey into experiences that challenge our way of thinking about history and how it can be reimagined when people from two countries traditional enemies and strangers become friends.

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      Posted by:Julia Alvarez
      Published :2018-012-19T08:36:32+00:00

    About "Julia Alvarez"

      • Julia Alvarez

        Julia lvarez was born in New York City Her parents moved back to the Dominican Republic when lvarez was 3 months old and she was raised there until she was 10, when the family moved back to NYC She is currently writer in residence at Middlebury College and the owner of a coffee farm named Alta Gracia, near Jarabacoa in the mountains of the Dominican Republic The farm hosts a school to teach local farmers and their families how to read and write.


    1. I think that Julia Alvarez was deceiving herself if she thought that her relationship with Piti and his family was one of friendship. For one thing, a real friendship requires some degree of commonality. There was absolutely none between Alvarez and Piti. A friendship also requires equality. She and this Haitian family can't possibly be equals for an entire boatload of reasons. I see her as a Lady Bountiful who wants to be honorable toward her employee, but there is this unbridgeable chasm of hi [...]

    2. Overall, it was a good book. I definitely would not have read this book if I previously had known how it was written. Up until the final night's reading, I thought this book was cleverly written. Perhaps it was simply too much for me to read so much in one sitting, yet the book itself was not as good as I had thought it was. Personally, I would not recommend this book to anyone. However, if my friend suddenly began reading it, I would encourage them to continue. I had mixed feelings about this b [...]

    3. 3.5 starsThe title's a little misleading. I thought the part about Haiti after the earthquake was more interesting than the events surrounding the wedding.

    4. On the surface, this is a simple book--Julia and Bill travel to Haiti for Piti's wedding. But it's much more than that; it's a portrait of a complex country most of us will never visit. It's told without hyperbole but in honest language and stories, providing depth and complexities that can't be captured in 60 seconds on the evening news. The book is divided into two sections--the trip for Piti's wedding and the return to Haiti six months after the earthquake in 2010. This one gets a five for Al [...]

    5. I'm a fan of Alvarez's fiction, but was disappointed by this tedious travelogue/memoir. It is centered around two trips taken because of a man, Piti, who works on the coffee plantation that Alvarez and her husband own, yet we barely get to know this man. Apparently Alvarez and her husband are his godparents--a fact casually tossed into the narrative partway through the story about the wedding. Well, we know precious little about this beloved employee. Instead Alvarez fixates on narrating the det [...]

    6. Will long remember Julia's adventures and descriptions. She brought Haiti to life. The library has this cataloged/shelved in the biography section. Putting in travel might have been my choice. It's one of those that I would have put on the display shelves frequently.In the library, there is a section of shelving just inside the main entry where new books are displayed, with the front cover facing the potential reader. Too often, the new book display shelves would be stripped of the more popular [...]

    7. • This was a quick enjoyable read.• While this was an ok read for me, I did think the author wrote with honesty and a caring heart.• Not many surprises for me as I know much about the history about each of the countries and the history between the countries – and have often gone off the beaten paths on the various islands. But it is an informative book for those who often do not see this side of Haiti.• This travelogue us-moir as the author calls – says it is not a me-moir as also ab [...]

    8. A Wedding in Haiti by Julia Alvarez was a sweet chronicle that provided an intimate, personal view of life in Haiti, beyond the images of its poverty that is often focused on in the media. Detailing the various events along the journey of the author and her companions, I was taken along with them to relive with them every little experience that comes from real life traveling in Haiti, further colored by the many photos of what Alvarez described. It introduced and immersed me into the lives of va [...]

    9. A Wedding In Haiti was an eye-opening cultural journey into the Dominican Republic and Haiti to attend a friend's wedding, during Haiti's recovery from a devastating earthquake. The author shares the cultural differences with the reader in such detail that you almost feel you are there. Fortunately, I was not, because I would not have been nearly as brave and hardy as the author. The black-and-white photos were a great help to the North Carolina, USA, native. I would never have been able to imag [...]

    10. I really enjoyed this book for several reasons. One, it was relatively short and a light read, something I appreciate due to time constraints. Also, through out the book I was exposed to situations which seemed almost strange to me. For example, the hotel that the two main characters show up to towards the beginning of the book. Through the way they described it, the hotel seemed to have been almost hazardous. In the United States such a hotel would surely be shut down due to infringements of se [...]

    11. There is something truly magical about randomly discovering a book on a free shelf only to find it deeply resonates with you. This book caught my attention because I already read and enjoyed "In The Time of the Butterflies", and have traveled throughout the Dominican Republic and could personally visualize many of the locations talked about in the book. I can understand where other readers are coming from being disappointed at Julia's relationship with Piti and the fallacy in thinking it's genui [...]

    12. Lately Haiti has been calling on my life. I suppose that is why I plucked this off the shelf. It's time had come.Again, my rating of the book has a personal vector, and if I had no connections to Haiti, perhaps this would rate 4 Stars. Which would be a shame, since Julia Alvarez is such a watchful guide through two journeys from the coffee plantation/literacy center she and her husband maintain in the Dominican Republic while living in Vermont. Crossing from the DR to Haiti has usually been a tr [...]

    13. I really enjoyed this book. Alvarez's recount of traveling to norhteastern Haiti from the Dominican Republic with her husband and several Haitians was very affirming of Haitian resiliance and as well as documenting the lack of infrastructure and poverty of the Haitian countryside. The story doesn't focus on this, but rather it is the context of her story of going to the wedding of her Haitian "son", Piti, a young man she and her husband have been close to for many years. I identified with her be [...]

    14. This book never really gelled for me. I felt like Alvarez was trying to connect all these various threads of ideas about her aging parents, the troubles of Haiti, the hardship for the people there and traveling in a third world country but the narrative just came off as trying too hard. Also none of her characters (which are real-life people) felt like fully developed people with personalities to me. The whole experience was like reading someone's stream-of-consciousness travel journal. Perhaps [...]

    15. Did not actually finish and after a few pages on my Kindle here and there over three years it's time to call it quits. Interesting enough subject matter but doesn't follow a linear narrative or have compelling enough characters to get me over the finish line, which is pretty rare for me and Alvarez is one of my favorite authors

    16. Loved it! Fascinating read on many levels - relationships, family, travel,politics, natural disasters, history, etc. Read it basically over one day as I could not put it down!

    17. Julia Alvarez is one of my favorite writers but at first it seemed as if this wasn't going to be one of my favorites of her books. It seemed a little dry, compared to her usual fare. But before I knew it, I was as sucked in to her travelogue as I have been to her fiction. I was put off when I got halfway through the book and the wedding referred to in the title had already taken place. The second half of the book was about a return journey to Haiti in the aftermath of the terrible Haitian earthq [...]

    18. A Wedding in Haiti, Julia Alvarez Alvarez wrote one of my favorite books ever - In the Time of the Butterflies - so reading a memoir by her seemed intriguing, especially when a Dominican-American woman is writing about getting to know the people and culture of her countries's close but maligned neighbor Haiti. After making a promise to a young Haitian man who works on her coffee plantation in the DR, Alvarez and her husband travel to a remote part of Haiti for his wedding. This first trip, along [...]

    19. This was an "impulse buy" at the library for me; I'm aware there are many hundreds of books on Haiti that I could have read instead, but since I have read some of Alvarez's other books it seemed more accessible. So, it's written very candidly as the perspective of a well-to-do Dominican writer and her white husband who have Haitian employees they come to consider family (and vice versa) making trips across the island the DR and Haiti share. Things I am reading lately seem to overlap coincidental [...]

    20. This was the nonfiction selection for Turning Page bookclub I attend. Very well written and interesting look into a country I know very little about. The first half of the book focuses on a trip completed as a promise to a young farm worker from the author. She promised she would attend his wedding. The trip is complicated by weather and poor roads, but they attend the wedding in the hills. The last half of the book is a return to Haiti after the hurricane that devastated the island nation.

    21. A well-written dive into the world of Hati, several months before and after the massive earthquake that rocked the small island. To be honest, I found the 'before' more interesting than the 'after', perhaps because Alvarez is very self-aware when she returns. It was intriguing to get to see how the various people responded, and she captured them all quite well.

    22. Fascinating story of traveling from the Dominican Republic into Haiti for a weddingw/ a return trip about a year alter. Gives one a feeling for the countries and the generosity of their people even when circumstances are not positive. I recognized the author, Julia Alvarez, as one I'd read before and liked.

    23. Interspersed within the story are snippets about the plight of the Haitian people preceding the earthquake and 6 months thereafter. The other main thread is familial ties and how they differ between cultures. Julia's voice came through -- and while there was a long cast of characters, it was more about her reaction to each person.

    24. This humanized Haiti in a way that few stories do, I always enjoy stories about real people and the lives they lead. The story about the borders and seeking employment and a " better life" is one many can recognize.

    25. Shallow and unmemorable—I recall being enormously disappointed waiting and waiting for something I could love and not finding it.

    26. When I'm on vacation in the Caribbean, I always try to pack among my books at least one that is either set in the region or written by somebody who hails from there--preferably both. The first one I read, A Wedding in Haiti by Julia Alvarez, is a fairly straightforward work of non-fiction that moved me to tears twice in the first chapter when I test-drove it at home, so it was a clear choice for my suitcase. I'd read little Alvarez in the past--her first novel and one collection of poetry out of [...]

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