Inspirational author to speak at Annual Hispanic Heritage Month lecture series

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The Tonanztin Society announced Reyna Grande, author, educator, activist, and motivational speaker will give a lecture at 6:30 p.m., September 16, 2015, at Washburn University’s Mabee Library. The event is free and open to the public.

Grande will discuss her award-winning book The Distance Between Us. She describes her immigration from Iguala, Mexico to the United States to seek a better future and the harrowing journey behind it. Iguala, in the Mexican state of Guerrero, is where 43 students, on September 26, 2014, were kidnapped and presumed killed sparking massive national and international outcries of Mexican government involvement.

In her book, Grande paints a vivid picture of loss, poverty, and the will to survive, to make her way to “el otro lado” (the other side referencing the United States). The inspirational memoir gives insight into the hot button topic of immigration. The Los Angeles Times hailed it as “the Angela’s Ashes of the modern Mexican immigrant experience.”

All of her books will be on sale at Washburn’s University bookstore. Following her lecture, Grande will have a 30-minute book signing at Mabee Library.

Ms. Grande also will be visiting and having lunch from 11:15-12:15 with Topeka High School English Language Learner students that same day. All students will be given a copy of her book as a gift from the Tonantzin Society. In addition to Grande visiting Topeka High there will be a college fair held at the high school to encourage Latino students towards higher education. Representatives from Washburn University Multi Cultural Affairs, Kansas State University Ethnic Studies, Kansas University Latin American Studies Outreach and University of Missouri Kansas City [email protected] Studies will all be in attendance and giving out relevant information from 10:30am – 2:00pm.

Sponsors for these events are AT&T of Kansas and Washburn Multi Cultural Affairs.

For more information on this inspirational Latina author visiting Topeka for the Tonantzin Society’s Hispanic Heritage Month event, go to

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