We are glad to announce the return appearance of Richard J. Gonzales as he presents his new work, Deer Dancer. The indigenous Yaqui world comes to life in Gonzales’ latest book.
by Richard J. Gonzales
Sleeping Panther Press (2018)
We are glad to announce the return appearance of Richard J. Gonzales as he presents his new work, Deer Dancer.
The indigenous Yaqui world comes to life in Gonzales’ latest book. Set in Sonora, Mexico of the 1880s, the historical fiction novel immerses the reader in the struggle of Cheve Falcon as he trains to perfect the deer dance. The deform-faced Yaqui teen seeks to prove to the Maso, spiritual deer, he’s worthy to transmute into his deer-son. Set in the Yaquis’ historical battle against first the Spaniards and then the Mexican government to keep their lands, culture, and language,Deer Dancer sweeps the reader into a lyrical, fiery passage. The eternal struggle for homeland, freedom, beauty and self-acceptance is captured in the Yaquis’ fight to the death with oppressors and a stalking, vengeful witch. Gonzales blends the Yaquis’ mystical beliefs with the harsh realities of a violent world.
Deer Dancer, published by Sleeping Panther Press, earned a score of 99 out of 100 in the 2018 Oklahoma Writers’ Federation, Inc. (OWFI) book contest.
The judge wrote, “The words beat like drums, flow like a dance, and echo on the wind like the whispers of the Little People. . . This is wonderful story . . . Beautiful writing . . . Impressive beyond words.”
LatinoAuthor.com selected his non-fiction book, Raza Rising: Chicanos in North Texas (University of North Texas Press, 2016) as the number one Latino book for nonfiction in 2016. It listed Deer Dancer as a recommended fiction book to read in 2018. The Texas Book Festival invited Gonzales in 2017 to discuss Raza Rising on a panel. He was a contributing Fort Worth Star-Telegram guest op-ed columnist, 2001-2007 and published short stories in The Americas Review, a literary journal of the University of Houston (Arte Público Press, 1987, 1988).
Richard J. Gonzales’ published work has appeared in the Panther City Review, 2017, a Texas Christian University college reader, and newspapers across the country. He has spoken at writers’ conferences about how to include diversity in writing. To stimulate the muse, he runs marathons.
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