In My Heart Lies South, Borton shows how an all-American woman with so much independence falls in love with one Mexican man and grows to embrace the culture so much so that it becomes a part of her. She wears all the hats, from curious spectator to active learner and finally falls gracefully into her new dress, always open, eager to learn and with humble acceptance. It is her humility and obedience that is like a gem, quite rare and beautiful to find in an American woman. But she learns by making mistakes, laughing at herself, crying tears of frustration, and learning moment by moment what gives life happiness, what makes love last, who holds families together, the madness of love, the fidelity of love, the safety of protection, the strength of a man, and the power of a woman within the family dynamic.
I cannot recommend this book enough. It speaks to the young woman who is learning about love. It relates with the young and fool-wise mother who is trying so desperately to raise her children right, but every one of her staunch arguments seems to backfire. It’s written to anyone who wants to be captured in the indomitable stronghold and safety net of a Mexican family.
Meet devout Mamacita. Look into her large, wise and mischievous eyes. She joyfully sacrifices everything for the sake of her family and is there through thick and thin. Meet the free-thinker Papacita who loves studying his books and looking after his grandchildren. Meet Beatriz and Roberto, the many tias (aunts), and a whole cast of characters who bring love and laughter to the bustling family scene.Like Elizabeth, turn the time backwards and enter a time of traditional values and ways of life. Encounter a real Mexican family, live in their home and traipse around their town. Discover the meaning behind cultural customs, the spiritual ecstasy of the Catholic faith, and yes, even the not-so-glamorous traditions or embarrassing superstitions that remind us gently that our Church is made up of sinners. After reading this book, I have a whole new appreciation and affection for Family. Maybe it is possible to bring that adventure to our own.