2016 & 2017 New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards “Finalist” – Historical Fiction Category
When Will Papa Get Home?
This poignant historical novel takes you to the high plains of southeastern Colorado, where a Mexican-American girl grows up knowing that her father has been imprisoned for ten years for something he didn’t do.
In When Will Papa Get Home?, Maria is taken back to her childhood home when she comes across a blue marble in her jewelry box. She remembers herself as an eight-year-old girl playing with the marble while waiting for her father to return to the rock-and-adobe homestead house her family had built with their own hands.
Based on the tale of “the Philly Place” that author Larada Horner-Miller has heard her whole life, this novel imagines the life of the person who might have left that very same blue marble behind, to be discovered by Horner-Miller while exploring her family ranch many decades later.
Through the fictitious daughter of a man named Philadelphia Gonzales, this novel relates the experiences of a Mexican-American community struggling to live the American dream while surrounded by often-hostile Anglos. Yet, amid the prejudice and injustice are many who are kind and welcoming. These characters, along with Maria’s own determination and personal growth, create an inspiring, uplifting tale.