OJAI, Calif., June 11, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- JL Ruiz (www.jlruizbooks.com), a new Mexican-American novelist, has been named a three-time finalist for the prestigious International Latino Book Awards. His novel, "Irreversible Damage: The Katie Suarez Social Justice Series," received recognition in these categories: Best Young Adult Latino Focused Book; Best Latino Focused Fiction Book; and Best Novel - Adventure or Drama – English. The book's cover has also been recognized in the Best Cover Illustration category for the cover artwork by artist Ignacio Gomez. The book will be released June 12.
"I am very honored to be recognized with such outstanding Latino writers," said Ruiz. "My book is not just a Mexican-American story; it's an American story that acknowledges how, in this nation of immigrants, there is good and bad amongst all people. Without coming to terms with the past, there is no understanding of how it affects the present, and without action, will continue to repeat in the future. The book is Katie's story, but it's a reminder to all Americans."
The International Latino Book Awards is a major reflection that the fastest growing group in the USA has truly arrived. The Awards are now by far the largest Latino cultural Awards in the USA, and with the 257 finalists this year in 95 categories, it has now honored the greatness of 2,893 authors and publishers over the past two decades. The size of the Awards is proof that books by and about Latinos are in high demand. In 2019 Latinos will purchase over $725 million in books in English and Spanish.
"The 2019 Finalists for the 21st Annual International Latino Book Awards are another reflection of the growing quality of books by and about Latinos," said Kirk Whisler, co-founder of Latino Literacy Now, the producer of the contest. "About a third of the winners were from major U.S. and international publishers, a third from medium-sized publishing houses, and a third were from small publishing houses or even self-published.
"To handle this large number of books, the Awards had 227 judges in 2019. The judges shared how hard it was because there are now so many great books being published. Judges included librarians, educators, media professionals, leaders of national organizations, Pulitzer Prize Winners, and even elected officials. The Awards celebrates books in English, Spanish and Portuguese. Finalists are from across the USA and Puerto Rico, as well as from 18 other countries."
In Irreversible Damage, Katie Suarez is a U.S. born Mexican-American living in a wealthy neighborhood in Paradise Valley, Arizona. Daughter to two successful Mexican-American lawyers, Katie goes through an unfortunate series of events that not only tear apart her family, but also leave her at standing at a crumbling precipice.
The Award Ceremony will take place September 21, 2019, in Los Angeles and is produced by Latino Literacy Now, a nonprofit co-founded by actor Edward James Olmos and Kirk Whisler.
SOURCE International Latino Book Awards