Common Read of ‘Josseline’ continues

“How far would you go to feed your children?” That’s one of the questions raised in the book The Death of Josseline: Immigration Stories from the Arizona Borderlands, about the struggles that face Mexicans and people from Central America as they try to cross the border between the United States and Mexico in an effort to survive.

Several hundred die each year, including 14-year-old Josseline, whose body was found in the desert in 2008. The Death of Josseline is a UUA “Common Read” this year, meaning that all congregations are encouraged to read the book, discuss it, and use it in sermons and in other ways.

The book is available in paperback for $15, with discounts for buying five or more copies, from the UUA Bookstore. Bookstore Manager Rose Hanig says they have sold more than 1,100 copies. Gail Forsyth-Vail, the UUA’s Adult Programs director, adds, “Winter is a great time for congregations to join the many other congregations where this book is being read. This is a book that begs for processing and conversation in a trusted community.”

Linda Laskowski, a member of the UUA Board of Trustees and the UU Church of Berkeley, Calif., has written about the book on her blog. Forsyth-Vail says the author of the book, Margaret Regan, will be at General Assembly next June to discuss the book and talk with those who took part in the Common Read.