The West was a place where anything was possible, and Los Angeles was the heart of that promise. Alejandro Morales introduces two very different families and an unpredictable river to explore the allure of Southern California and the history of Los Angeles.
From these two families of bridge builders emerges a story of interconnectedness, a unique system of relations linking both sides of the river. Through the Rivers and the Kellers' families, we enter a multi-cultural sphere of darkness and despair juxtaposed with hope and joy; times of violent discrimination contrasted with loving acceptance. Although these two families come from different backgrounds ethnic, social, and linguistic their lives and fortunes become inextricably linked through their children, whose illicit love affair leads to tragedy, their families infected, wrenched apart by racism and the pseudo-science of eugenics propounded during the 1950s.
River of Angels is a richly detailed look at those who have lived on both sides of the river: Native people, Europeans, Latinos, blacks, and Asians, people making their home in the West, sojourners in need of bridges of understanding. Acclaimed novelist Alejandro Morales excavates the layered history of Los Angeles in this stirring epic of love, loss, sin and redemption.