Aarti Shahani Discusses 'Here We Are: American Dreams, American Nightmares'
Monday, Oct. 14, 2019, 7 – 8:30 p.m.
Aarti Shahani Discusses 'Here We Are: American Dreams, American Nightmares'
WhereCentral Library
Room LocationLevel 1 - Microsoft Auditorium
AudienceTeens, Adults
LanguageEnglish
SummaryNPR correspondent Shahani uses her family's immigration story to unpack the deep schism of American culture by which the "deserving" are deified and the "underserving" demonized.
View in Catalog"Here We Are: American Dreams, American Nightmares" by Aarti Shahani
DescriptionWho really belongs in America? That question has chased every newcomer and many native born since the founding of the republic. In this heart-wrenching, vulnerable and witty memoir, journalist Aarti Shahani digs deep inside herself and her family for an answer―one that she finds in an unlikely place.

The Shahanis came to Queens―from India, by way of Casablanca―in the 1980s. They were undocumented for a few years and then, with the arrival of their green cards, they thought they'd made it. This memoir is the story of how they did, and didn't.

Here We Are: American Dreams, American Nightmares follows the lives of Aarti, the precocious scholarship kid at one of Manhattan's most elite prep schools, and her dad, the shopkeeper who mistakenly sells watches and calculators to the notorious Cali drug cartel. Together, the two represent the extremes that coexist in our country, even within a single family, and a truth about immigrants that gets lost in the headlines. It isn’t a matter of good or evil; it's complicated.

Ultimately, Here We Are is a coming-of-age story, a love letter from an outspoken modern daughter to her soft-spoken Old World father. She never expected they'd become best friends.

"Aarti Shahani’s book is destined to take its place among the finest memoirs written in recent decades―a heartbreaking, hilarious and tender love letter to the millions of people who have made their way across lands and oceans to try and find a new life in America. This book will take you on a vivid, almost cinematic journey that is both beautiful and unforgettable."

―Guy Raz, co-creator of How I Built This, Wow in the World and TED Radio Hour
NotesLibrary events and programs are free and everyone is welcome. Registration is not required. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. Seating is on a first come, first seated basis.

Accommodation requests may be made with seven days advanced notice to LEAP or call (206) 615-1380 (v/tty).

This event is presented in partnership with Elliott Bay Book Company. Books will be available for purchase and signing at the event.
PodcastThis event will be recorded for podcast.
Have a question?Ask Us
Contact Phone206-386-4636
Contact Info*Central Library
Room CapacitySpace is limited at library events. Please come early to make sure you get a seat. Due to the fire code, we can’t exceed the maximum capacity for our rooms.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
View CalendarPrint