"Enrique's Journey" by Sonia Nazario is the story of a young boy, five-year-old Enrique, whose mother, 24-year-old Lourdes, has left him and his older sister Belky in their native Honduras to find work in the United States. After an 11-year separation, Enrique sets out to travel to America and find his mother. "Enrique's Journey" chronicles the dangerous and adventurous path that Enrique takes in order to immigrate illegally into the United States and find his mother.
"Enrique's Journey" is a Pulitzer Prize-winning book created from an Los Angeles Times newspaper series. The book is required reading for many American high school students. It contains seven chapters, a prologue and an afterword. Summaries of chapters 1-6 are available on Pulitzer.org. Chapter One summarizes Enrique's life from the ages of 5 to 17, from the time of his mother's departure until the time he decides to leave Honduras and seek her out. Chapters Two through Five follow Enrique on a downward spiral of resentment, fear and loneliness which leads to drug use and other poor and dangerous choices. Enrique endures starvation, dehydration and abuse. It is not until Chapter Six that Enrique finally paddles his way into American territory on an inner tube. In Chapter Seven Enrique is reunited with his mother in America.