Translate My Blog To Your Language

Friday, June 26, 2015

2015 International Book Awards

Dear friends, 

If you're in the San Francisco area tomorrow June 27th, I will be signing for #Shattered Paradise: Memoirs of a Nicaraguan War Child @ the #MosconeCenter, #AmericanLibraryAssociation, Booth 3138. 

Sunday, August 17, 2014

How to properly wake up every morning!

Waking up in the morning is no easy business. But as life passes by and I reflect on how many people have come and gone.  I've decided that the best way to wake up in the morning is with a great celebration...for every morning we open our eyes is another day we are alive.--Ileana Araguti

                                                                                       Live well and thrive my good friends :-)

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Shattered Paradise: Memoirs of a Nicaraguan War Child earns awards!

On Saturday, June 28, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada, Ileana Araguti's memoir, Shattered Paradise: Memoirs of a Nicaraguan War Child, won first place for Best Non Fiction ebook, first place for Best Latino-focused book design and second place for Best First Book Non Fiction, whereas the late singer and actress Jenni Rivera was awarded first place at the 2014 International Latino Book Awards in association with the American Library Association 2014 Conference. 

The Awards were held at the Clark County-Las Vegas Library Theater. Over the last 16 years the Int’l Latino Book Awards has grown to become the largest Latino literary and cultural awards in the USA. Amongst this year’s 231 honorees were well known authors like Alma Flor Ada, Isabel Allende, Rudy Anaya, Mary J. Andrade, Edna Iturralde, all of whom are past ILBA Award Winners. Other honorees include Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, and celebrities like TV chef Pati Jinich, the late singer and actress Jenni Rivera, singer Linda Ronstadt, screenwriter Rick Najera, and TV personality Lilliana Vasquez. Winners were from across the USA and from 18 countries outside the USA.

Shattered Paradise is Araguti's first book and has received consistent 5 Star reviews on  She has earned an award from Readers' Favorite as well, and her inspirational book might be considered for a movie in the future. 

In addition, Araguti is currently wrapping up her next novel and is scheduled to complete two more within the next couple of years. To learn more about Ileana Araguti, visit her website and follow this blog!

Friday, June 27, 2014

Book Signing for 
Shattered Paradise: Memoirs of a Nicaraguan War Child 
ALA Conference 2014, Vegas     Booth 2110
Saturday, June 28th @10:00 a.m.
Sunday, June  29th @ 9:00 a.m.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Book Signing

See you soon Dallas, Texas!

Book Signing & Reading

New Trends Press

Lucky Dog Books

Sunday, June 15, 12:00 noon, Lucky Dog Books, 10801 Garland Rd., Dallas 75218.
Sunday, June 15, 2:00 pm, Lucky Dog Books, 633 W. Davis St., Oak Cliff/Dallas 75208.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Maya Angelou, The Voice of Strength

Today I share the sadness of a great loss but I'm certain there is a red carpet celebration in the heavens. Maya Angelou left us many great gifts but the one I cherish the most is that of inner strength and intimate peace.  If in doubt, whether one person can make a difference in this world...just look around at all of the amazing people that have stepped up and demonstrated that yes, it CAN be done.

For years I've read her work and have been greatly inspired by it.  Her quote reaffirmed the great joy and relief I felt when I published my memoir, Shattered Paradise. Indeed, "There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you."--Maya Angelou

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Malediction of War

On a day like today, May 20th, ill-omened clouds whirled in the sky; the thick air made it hard to breathe as changes were brought upon our small town in Nicaragua. It had been decided, the last Somoza dictator, Anastasio Somoza Debayle, would soon be overthrown by the FSLN (Frente Sandinista de LiberaciĆ³n Nacional.) It was early in the morning, cannot recall the exact time, for all I can remember is the feeling of disorientation as we awoke to the resonating blast of bombs that crushed the cobblestone roads and the heavy machinery that annihilated whatever came across its path.  And after the thunders of weaponry had ceased and there was no one else to kill, the tenebrous siren that had first led us to the refuge, once again instructed us to resume our journey back home—as if nothing had ever happened. The frighten crowd gathered their belongings and cautiously stepped out of the building like deer into an open meadow. Slowly, people resumed their walk into town, but this time silence transpired through the multitude and no one shoved or hurried to get ahead, casting an eerie feeling amongst us. The clean smell of the air we were used to became replaced by gunpowder and the nauseating smell of blood.

The heart pounding reverberation of people’s fear now serenaded our innocent lives. My own heartbeat increased to levels I was unused to. People murmured and cried... and others stood silent like me, blinded by the sight of red hues from mutilated corpses that tainted the streets. After encountering the malediction of war, nothing could ever be the same.  

                                            ---Excepts from Shattered Paradise: Memoirs of a Nicaraguan War Child

The cost of war is too high.  War only leads to despair and incurable loss.  We can all make a difference in this world...lead a positive life and minimize the many wars we might cause each day.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

A Mother for all Times

It was said once that merely giving birth to a child does not necessarily make a woman into a good mother.  Rather, it is both the act of physically giving birth and raising a child through good and bad times.  My mother did both and went beyond sacrifice to ensure my happiness...and for that I'm ever so grateful.

The following is an excerpt from my memoir: Shattered Paradise: Memoirs of a Nicaraguan War Child.  Ever since I've known my mother, she has been abnegated and dedicated to the family.  Her resiliency has saved many lives and has brought much needed hope.

Chapter 1

According to my beloved grandfather, my parents’ marriage began with a promise of love, which made my young Mama agree to all ideas Papa proposed. She followed like a child follows a parent—right behind, no questions asked. Until one day, deep into the cloud forest of Nicaragua, fear thickened the air, and the warm soil’s vapors permeated through the wild grass. The torrential storm unleashed its fury, over-flooding riverbanks, and creating new paths along the way. Lightning parted the skies covered by an ominous curtain of clouds, which in turn brought unusually cold air upon my parents’ isolated farmhouse. To their denial, the reason for such wrath remains unclear. Papa had blamed it on natural disasters, possibly a hurricane or the exploitation of the land’s resources: the chained monkeys, deforestation and the extracting of scarlet macaws from their nests. Mama had blamed the Lord for washing away our sins, and I only blamed the unremitting tears escaping Mama’s soul at the recollection of an event, one that had happened so long ago.

For many years, I remained uncertain of what made Mama passionate for Papa. Out of respect to my parents, I never asked. Perhaps it was his deep clef chin, his light brown hair, his right cheek dimple or his incurable obstinacy. His height could not have attracted her, for Mama always stood taller than Papa. This disproportion, often exaggerated by her high-heeled shoes, did not trouble Papa as long as her arm went under his, and he was close to her brunette hair and to her slim silhouette wrapped in porcelain skin.

“Follow me to the farm. I have built us a new home. I will hire helpers to help us plow the land. There, you will have everything, from organic foods to my unconditional love,” Papa persuaded Mama.

“Wait until our first child is born,” Mama responded. Eager Papa could hardly wait to have her by his side, and solely for him. Therefore, just a month after the birth of their first child Amanda, he swayed her to follow him to their remote farm amid the forest. He wished to reproduce his family with only the symphony of the surrounding wildlife and solemn company of the broadleaf trees.

“No! Wait at least one year before taking the child to the forest,” Mama’s unfailing priest, Father Odorico advised.

“But father, the Holy Scripture commands that a good wife must accompany her husband wherever he might go! Please father, offer me your blessing.”

“In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit...” the humble priest blessed, exposing a re- sewn cassock beneath his armpit.

Mama packed an old leather luggage that had belonged to Abuela and hurried to La EstaciĆ³n with little Amanda in her arms, wrapped snuggly in a pink blanket. Once there, she would ride the bus to meet her young husband by the roadside. The noise of the busy transit made little Amanda cry but Mama cradled her onto her warm chest. 

“It’s all right my angel, we are going with Papa,” she whispered to the child as her eyes glistened with emotions, typical of a woman in love.

The old yellow bus quickly overfilled its capacity with passengers who smelled like days-old fermentation. They were mostly campesinos, humble peasants traveling with live chickens tied up by their feet with a nylon string, upside down and hung onto wooden poles, which they carried over their shoulders nearly poking Mama on the head. But holding her breath behind her polite smile, she managed to shove herself to the very back of the bus where a gentleman would offer his own seat. The heavily pot-holed dirt road made her body ache, but she knew the pain was worth enduring, for beyond the dust clouds raised by the old diesel bus, awaited a completely new world.

“Soon, our lungs will breathe fresh air; our eyes will see beautiful wild flowers, moss and exotic animals,” she whispered again into the infant’s ear. Throughout the journey, Mama drifted into a world of spectacular dreams. She imagined herself galloping along with little Amanda and her husband through the mystical cloud forests, bathing under cool waterfalls and dancing in a garden filled with scented wild orchids and melodious Toucanets. Until the bus came to a sudden stop and Mama had to shove herself once more through the overly crowded bus, evading the flutter of the restless upside-down chickens on the campesinos’ wooden poles. 

Upon arrival, wearing black high-water boots and a large cowboy hat, awaited Papa, acknow- ledging Mama with anticipation. When Mama first saw him, her heart nearly exited off her chest and feeling butterflies inside her stomach nearly forgot she was carrying little Amanda. Papa waved by the roadside, exposing his deep cheek dimples and cleft chin as he held two horses firmly, a black Andalusia horse that was his and a red Clydesdale he had purchased for Mama. The young lovers hugged and without much hesitation, saddled onto their own horses and embarked on a journey that would soon transform their lives forever.

To be continued......