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Memoirist Shares Immigration Story

In National Book Award winner Caros Eire's second memoir, "Learning to Die in Miami: Confessions of a Refugee Boy," he mines more memories from his dislocated youth which was upended by his 1962 escape to the U.S. from Cuba, also the subject of a 2003 memoir. On April 7, Eire visits Darien Library, to talk about his story's next installment and the experiences he drew on in writing it. Publishers Weekly called "Learning to Die in Miami," "Easily one of the more impressive memoirs on the thorny issue of immigration." Darien Library chose the book for its town-wide, "One Book, One Town" reading program, encouraging residents to read the same book. Eire, married with three children and a Yale Professor of History and Religious Studies, was 11 when he fled Cuba, his birth place, along with his older brother. They were part of Operation Peter Pan which brought14,000 children, without parents, to the U.S. to escape Cuba's political turmoil. Beyond the heartwrenching departure from Cuba, arriving parentless in Miami, he is placed in foster homes (his mother does not arrive in the U.S. for several years and he never sees his father again) while also trying to figure out his place in this new society. In an interview about his first memoir, "Waiting for Snow in Havana," which won the National Book Award, Eire says, "I had to 'steal' time to write my memoir -- almost entirely from what should have been hours of rest and sleep -- and if I ever want to write anything like it again, I will have to become the same kind of thief again." Luckily, he was willing to and wrote "Learning to Die in Miami" which, in spite of his lack of sleep, the Boston Globe called "vigorously written and alive." Eire's talk at Darien Library begins at 7 p.m. and is free. For more information, visit the Library's website .

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