In 1839, José Policarpo Rodriguez came north with his father from Zaragosa, Mexico, to the Republic of Texas. Poli was ten years old when he arrived in Texas, and he and his father settled in the Hill Country near San Antonio. Poli grew up with Comanches, surveyed territory for the Republic of Texas and the United States Army, fought against warring Indians, and mapped settlements for nineteenth-century German settlers in Texas. He was the first non-Indian to discover the Big Bend Country and Cascades Caverns, and during the Mexican-American War and the Civil War, he was Captain of the San Antonio Home Guard.
Twenty five years ago award-winning author Jay Neugeboren captured Poli's inspirational story in his young adult novel, POLI: A Mexican Boy in Early Texas. Texas Tech University Press is thrilled to re-issue this critically acclaimed book on December 1, 2014 (Trade Paperback; $17.56), in honor of the 25th anniversary of its publication. This 25th Anniversary edition will include a special note from the author, along with a Reader's Guide.
"It is my hope that POLI will inform--and inspire--young Hispanic men and women, while also educating readers everywhere, about the role this remarkable Mexican-American, José Policarpo Rodriguez, played in the exciting, formative years of Texas history," says author Jay Neugeboren.
Caught between the three main elements that made up early Texas-- Indians, and Anglos--Poli struggled to decide where his true loyalties lay, and his decisions showed a kind of courage that was rare in those days. . .and is still rare today.
For more information contact Rachel Tarlow Gul at Over the River Public Relations: 201-503-1321, Rachel@otrpr.com.
Praise for POLI:
"Neugeboren presents an accomplished blending of fact and fiction, and explains the areas in which truth and drama diverge. Poli's experiences were part of an astonishing era in Texas's past, and readers searching for solid historical writing will find it in these pages."
"Meticulously researched details abound: a portrayal of the hopelessness of the Mexican peonage system; the volador, a feat of Aztec derring-do that is still practiced; foods eaten by Mexicans and Indians; fascinating descriptions of Comanche horsemanship; sketches of Comanche village life, their personal effects, adornments, and grooming. . .the story of Poli is filled with thrills, real people, and real life."
"In POLI, Jay Neugeboren brings fact and fiction together in a moving and sensitive way! I loved this book, and so will children of all ages!"
Read "The Cure for Literary Melancholy", from Publishers Weekly
JAY NEUGEBOREN Jay Neugeboren is the author of 21 books, including two prize-winning novels (The Stolen Jew, Before My Life Began), two award-winning books of nonfiction (Imagining Robert, Transforming Madness), and four collections of award-winning stories. His stories have appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, Esquire, Black Clock, Ploughshares, Best American Short Stories, The O. Henry Prize Stories, and Penguin Modern Stories. His novel, 1940, was long-listed for the 2009 International Impac Dublin Literary Prize. His most recent novel, The American Sun & Wind Moving Picture Company (2013), was chosen as a Book of the Year Medalist by the Independent Publishers Association. He lives in New York City.
Agent: Richard Parks, PO Box 693, Salem, NY 12865
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