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Maria de Lourdes

Victoria

I am a bilingual writer born and raised in Veracruz, Mexico, currently residing in the state of Washington. I write novels, short stories and children’s books. I wrote my first novel, Los Hijos Del Mar (The children of the sea) because I wanted my sons to know their ancestry and to be proud of their heritage. The story, set during the late nineteenth century in México and in Spain, is based on the lives of my ancestors, the Victorias, who made a name for themselves in México’s pharmaceutical industry, and the Muguiras, Spanish immigrants who found success cultivating and trading coffee seeds. The novel weaves both families’ sagas into a shared destiny and their intertwined tales becomes, finally, the love story of my parents. Click here to read a chapter of Los Hijos del Mar.

My second novel, Más allá de la Justicia (Beyond Justice) is a farewell to my former profession as a litigator. Through the first-person narrative of my three characters, I bring my reader into the harsh world of our criminal justice system, the complex lives of the accused, and the people who work, relentlessly, in the pursuit of justice. While the novel is not a memoir, my work as a public defender influenced my writing, and the process became therapy, allowing me to understand how the experience had shaped me. Click here to preview Mas Alla De La Justicia

A number of literary journals have published my short stories. The theme that seems to permeate my prose in that genre is the struggle that Latinos face in the United States. My characters are often working women trying to survive in a country that is not their own. The inspiration for the stories often comes from the people I try to help in my current work as a mediator.

I particularly enjoy writing for children. I find the process uplifting, and a good source of balance, especially when the substance of my adult work is often dark, and daunting. The more I explore and learn about this genre, the more it calls to me, especially when I am around my grandchildren, who are my best, and most devoted audience.

The other Maria Victoria

It often happens that when we migrate to another country, our name gets changed. In my case, my name shrunk simply because the Anglosaxon tongue would cramp whenever it tried to pronounce Lourdes. Of course, that was before Madonna baptized her own daughter with the name, and Lourdes became a fashionable girls’ name. I share all this to explain how it was that I ended up with a name a did not deserve, the name of the famous Mexican actress and singer, Maria Victoria.

You may be surprised to know that in these parts of the northwest, our Mexican diva is not, shall we say, well known… From time to time I run into a fellow countryman (of my generation) who, upon hearing my name, smiles cheekily and says, "Maria Victoria is your name, you say? Well, I know the other María Victoria, and forgive me for saying so , but you do not look like her at all ."

It's true. She is a beautiful, voluptuous woman with those big, brown eyes – typical of the women of Jalisco – that have inspired great composers such as Agustín Lara to describe her thus: "Maria Victoria, a voice that all at once becomes flesh and fragrance." I am, on the other hand, not flesh but bones, and cannot inspire even a toad. But I don’t get offended when I hear for the thousandth time the sly remark. This is what I deserve for using such sacred name…

Let me say it, I am her biggest fan. Such voice! Such acting talent! Such a body! And to top it all, she is funny! In my humble opinion, Maria Victoria is one of our best contemporary comedians. But perhaps most impressive is the full and prolific life she has lived. When I read about her, I, myself, am inspired to write a novel about her life. It is impossible not to love her, which is why every morning when I send my blessings, I include her in the mix, wishing her continued success and eternal shine of those beads that today adorn her eighty one year old evening gown: her wrinkles and white hair.

So in this space, I want to introduce her to those who have not had the privilege to know her. I hope that one day she will go down in history, not as the "La criada mal criada“ (The badly raised maid - I never liked that nickname), but as the jewel she continues to be, "The Pearl of the West."

Brief Biography:

María Victoria Cervantes Cervantes has a privileged place in the history of the music and movies in Mexico. She was born on February 26, 1933 in Guadalajara, Jalisco, and in 1942 made er film debut with the film  Song of the Americas. Thereafter she completed about 40 films in Mexico and Spain. The so-called 'Timeless Beauty ', ' The Exotic Dressed ' and ' The Pearl of the West " achieved popularity in the Margo Theater (today Blanquita theater), where she performed for a long time with the show ‘The badly raised sevant ' . As a singer, she has recorded more than 500 titles , which have been compiled in about 100 albums, most notably I'm so in love. She has been the inspiration of great composers such as Agustín Lara, who wrote the song I feel like a kiss , and singer Juan Gabriel, Maria Victoria has won countless awards and has received several awards both in Mexico and abroad. 

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