Neruda on the Park: A Novel (Paperback)
NEW YORK TIMES EDITORS’ CHOICE • An exhilarating debut novel following members of a Dominican family in New York City who take radically different paths when faced with encroaching gentrification
“Strikes all the right notes—captivating characters, lyrical language, and a storyline that captures your imagination and refuses to let go . . . an unforgettable debut!”—Tayari Jones, New York Times bestselling author of An American Marriage
ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR: PopSugar
The Guerreros have lived in Nothar Park, a predominantly Dominican part of New York City, for twenty years. When demolition begins on a neighboring tenement, Eusebia, an elder of the community, takes matters into her own hands by devising an increasingly dangerous series of schemes to stop construction of the luxury condos. Meanwhile, Eusebia’s daughter, Luz, a rising associate at a top Manhattan law firm who strives to live the bougie lifestyle her parents worked hard to give her, becomes distracted by a sweltering romance with the handsome white developer at the company her mother so vehemently opposes.
As Luz’s father, Vladimir, secretly designs their retirement home in the Dominican Republic, mother and daughter collide, ramping up tensions in Nothar Park, racing toward a near-fatal climax.
A beautifully layered portrait of family, friendship, and ambition, Neruda on the Park weaves a rich and vivid tapestry of community as well as the sacrifices we make to protect what we love most, announcing Cleyvis Natera as an electrifying new voice.
About the Author
Cleyvis Natera was born in the Dominican Republic, migrated to the United States at ten years old, and grew up in New York City. She holds a BA from Skidmore College and an MFA from New York University. Her writing has won awards and fellowships from PEN America, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the Kenyon Review’s Writers Workshops, and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. She lives with her husband and two young children in Montclair, New Jersey. Neruda on the Park is her first novel.
“Cleyvis Natera had me in her thrall from beginning to end. Neruda on the Park speaks to so many of our current challenges with moral imagination, grace, and wickedly good, page-turning storytelling.”—Julia Alvarez, bestselling author of Afterlife and How the García Girls Lost Their Accents
“A lush, beautifully layered look at class, culture, and change. . . . Natera’s prose is intricate, tender, and perfectly calibrated. This is a tremendous debut novel from a profoundly gifted writer.”—Kimberly King Parsons, National Book Award–longlisted author of Black Light
“Neruda on the Park is a book so honest, so implicating, so liberating that it is at once beautiful and terrifying. . . . A loud triumph that caresses like a whisper.”—Robert Jones, Jr., New York Times bestselling author of The Prophets
“Neruda on the Park is as poignant and perceptive as it is sexy and thrilling, the rare book that manages to be chilling and fun and profound all at once. . . . A remarkable feat of imagination from a wholly original writer.”—Naima Coster, New York Times bestselling author of What’s Mine and Yours
“Natera is a writer to watch. Her excellent debut novel is lyrical, absorbing, and slyly funny.”—Jenny Offill, New York Times bestselling author of Weather
“Natera has written a powerful and arresting novel with unforgettable characters. Neruda on the Park is the book we need and the reason I read.”—Angie Cruz, author of Dominicana
“Armed with wit and a warm sense of humor, Natera deftly scales questions as huge as the luxury building that looms over her characters’ lives. . . . A beautifully observed and propulsive debut.”—Dawnie Walton, author of The Final Revival of Opal & Nev
“An insightful narrative that sifts through the layers of the family, lovers, and places we choose to find home in.”—Elizabeth Acevedo, National Book Award–winning author of The Poet X
“A dazzling triumph . . . Every beat of Natera’s gorgeous prose pulses with urgency, humanity, and a whole lot of heart.”—Zakiya Dalila Harris, New York Times bestselling author of The Other Black Girl
“A wondrous debut . . . Natera’s novel is a compelling, crucial work of fiction.”—Mitchell S. Jackson, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Survival Math
“Natera plays with definitions of home and material and spiritual success, showing how the personal and political can become confused even when a cause, or a crime, seems straightforward . . . A savvy melodrama, warmhearted and as astute as a lawyer’s brief.” —Kirkus Reviews