Host Sarika Mehta interviews Marivi Soliven about her new novel "The Mango Bride."
"The Mango Bride" is the story of two immigrant Filipinas in California. Banished by her wealthy Filipino family in Manila, Amparo Guerrero travels to Oakland, California, to forge a new life. Although her mother labels her life in exile a diminished one, Amparo believes her struggles are a small price to pay for freedom…
Like Amparo, Beverly Obejas – an impoverished Filipina waitress – forsakes Manila and comes to Oakland as a mail order bride in search of a better life. Yet even in the land of plenty, Beverly fails to find the happiness and prosperity she envisioned.
As Amparo works to build the immigrant’s dream, she becomes entangled in the chaos of Beverly’s immigrant nightmare. Their unexpected collision forces both of them to make terrible choices and confront a life-changing secret, but through it all they hold fast to family in all its enduring and surprising transformations.
Marivi Soliven has taught writing workshops at UC San Diego and at the University of the Philippines. Her writing first gained recognition with silver medals for children's fiction at Palanca Awards for Literature in 1992 and 1993. In 1998 her short story "Beaux Café" won the Philippines Free Press Grand Prize for fiction. Another short story, "Talunang Manok," was adapted for a short film in December 2011. Short stories and essays from Soliven's 15 books have appeared in anthologies and textbooks on creative writing. Her essays and stories have been featured in Where Are You From? An Anthology of Asian American Writing and The Journal of Post Colonial Studies.
She gained entry to Hedgebrook's Writers in Residence program in 2012.