Growing up in a Mexican village at the height of the Revolution, Diego León finds his passion for singing and dancing, and forges a deep connection to his ancestors, the P’urhépecha. But soon young Diego is sent to the city to live with his white, aristocratic grandparents, who insist he forget his roots and groom him to take over the family business. Feeling trapped by familial obligations and haunted by the violence that continues to rage all around him, Diego flees Mexico for Hollywood. He arrives in 1927, when Prohibition-era speakeasies are in full swing, silent films are giving way to talkies, and “Latin lover” types thrive in the cinemas but face persecution on the streets. The closer Diego comes to stardom, the more he is reminded of his painful past and his war-torn homeland. Available now for the first time in paperback, The Five Acts of Diego León is a classic Hollywood tale of romance, glamour, and betrayal, with an underdog hero that you won’t soon forget.
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Alex Espinoza was born in Tijuana, Mexico. He came to the United States with his family at the age of two and grew up in suburban Los Angeles. Author of the novel Still Water Saints, he received an MFA from the University of California, Irvine. A recipient of the Margaret Bridgman Fellowship in Fiction at the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, Espinoza is currently the Tomás Rivera Endowed Chair of Creative Writing at UC Riverside.