Book cover

The Miners’ Lament

The Story of Latina Activists in the Empire Zinc Mine Strike


This historical fiction novel for middle grade readers tells the story of a Mexican-American girl trying to exert power in her family and community.

It’s 1951, and workers at the Empire Zinc mine in Alba, New Mexico, have been striking for months. Among them is Ana Maria Garcia’s father, who says they may need to sell her vihuela to pay rent. But her vihuela was a gift from her recently deceased mother, and her dream is to be a corridista, a singer of Mexican ballads. As Ana Maria is drawn to the picket line, she is inspired to write a corrido about her mother and the other women of the mining community. An upcoming talent show may be Ana Maria’s chance to earn money for rent and save her vihuela—if she can give voice to the song of her heart.

It’s the storytellers that preserve a nation’s history. But what happens when some stories are silenced? The I Am America series features fictional stories based on important historical events from people whose voices have been under represented, lost, or forgotten over time.

The Miners’ Lament is published by North Star Editions. The release date is September 1, 2021.