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The Barbarian Nurseries

Listen: Morning Edition: Novel Chronicles A California Dream Divided (Duration: 5:53)
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Morning Edition: Novel Chronicles A California Dream Divided

If Hector Tobar turns out to be the Charles Dickens or the Tom Wolfe of the 21st century, he owes a big thank-you to the people of California. Some of them, anyway.

Duration: 5:53
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Dusting Off A Gritty, Glamorous California

Tobar chooses John Fante's Ask the Dust for All Things Considered's You Must Read This.

Duration: 3:59
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Zyzzyva editor Oscar Villalon reviews The Barbarian Nurseries

If you went only by "The Real Housewives of Orange County" or cable news pundits, you'd never know the deep complexity of life in Southern California. But Los Angeles Times columnist and author Hector Tobar captures that richness and more in his new novel, "The Barbarian Nurseries."

Duration: 3:39
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Héctor Tobar on The Madeleine Brand Show

Araceli is a maid for a wealthy couple, Scott Torres and his wife, Maureen Thompson. After the couple fires their household staff, Araceli finds herself with new responsibilities, principally child care. These characters are at the heart of the new book, "The Barbarian Nurseries."

Duration: 13:00
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Michael Silverblatt interviews Hector Tobar on KCRW's Bookworm

Araceli Ramirez, the heroine of Héctor Tobar's new novel, The Barbarian Nurseries (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), is a nanny who finds herself accused of kidnapping her charges, when she is, in fact, taking them to their grandfather. This conversation centers on the way our concept of racialism enables us to make explosive incidents out of what are really good intentions gone wrong.

Duration: 30:00
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