First Gen: A Memoir
*A NATIONAL BESTSELLER*
Finalist for the Golden Poppy's Martin Cruz Smith Award
Longlisted for the Outstanding Works of Literature (OWL) Award for First Year Experience
An unflinching memoir and "invaluable resource" (Kirkus) about navigating social mobility as a first gen Latina—offering both a riveting personal story and an examination of the unacknowledged emotional tolls of being a trailblazer.
Alejandra Campoverdi has been a child on welfare, a White House aide to President Obama, a Harvard graduate, a gang member’s girlfriend, and a candidate for U.S. Congress. She’s ridden on Air Force One and in G-rides. She’s been featured in Maxim magazine and had a double mastectomy. Living a life of contradictory extremes often comes with the territory when you’re a “First and Only.” It also comes at a price.
With candor and heart, Alejandra retraces her trajectory as a Mexican American woman raised by an immigrant single mother in Los Angeles. Foregoing the tidy bullet points of her resume and instead shining a light on the spaces between them, what emerges is a powerful testimony that shatters the one-dimensional glossy narrative we are often sold of what it takes to achieve the American Dream. In this timely and revealing reflection, Alejandra draws from her own experiences to name and frame the challenges First and Onlys often face, illuminating a road to truth, healing, and change in the process.
Part memoir, part manifesto, FIRST GEN is a story of generational inheritance, aspiration, and the true meaning of belonging—a gripping journey to “reclaim the parts of ourselves we sacrificed in order to survive.”
Alejandra Campoverdi is a nationally recognized women’s health advocate, founder, producer, and former White House aide to President Obama. She produced and appeared in the celebrated PBS documentary Inheritance, founded the Latinos & BRCA awareness initiative in partnership with Penn Medicine’s Basser Center, and served as the first White House deputy director of Hispanic media. Alejandra is currently on the boards of Harvard’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics, and Public Policy, the Friends of the National Museum of the American Latino, and the California Community Foundation. She holds a master in public policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and graduated cum laude from the University of Southern California.
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Publication Date: 09/12/2023 - 12:00am
On Sale: 09/12/2023 - 12:00am