author | poet | playwright
"Reality is a sound, you have to tune in to it not just keep yelling."
Viviana Prado-Núñez was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico in a hospital with a 4.0 Google review rating and a view of the ocean. She has never seen Star Wars, eaten a grasshopper, or written a poem without the letter ‘e,’ though she hopes to do all three of those things in the future. Previous publications include poetry and personal essays in The Best Teen Writing of 2014, 4x4 Magazine, Columbia Spectator, and Quarto Magazine. She is also the 2017 winner of the Burt Award for Caribbean Young Adult Literature for her novel, The Art of White Roses, which was published in May 2018 and is currently longlisted for the 2020 International Dublin Literary Award. Her first play, And the Trees Fall Down, received a workshop production with the 2018 Furnace Festival at The Center at West Park. She is an undergraduate student at Columbia University in the City of New York and a 2019 National Young Playwright in Residence with the Echo Theater Company, for which she recently developed a second play entitled Medusa, Underwater and received a staged reading in November 2019.
The Art of White Roses
Winner of the 2017 Burt Award for Caribbean Young Adult Literature
Longlisted for the 2020 International Dublin Literary Award
It is 1957 in Marianao, a suburb on the outskirts of Havana. Adela Santiago is thirteen years old and lives in a small blue house with her mother, father, brother, and grandfather. And yet something is amiss. Her neighbors are disappearing. Not only that, but her parents' marriage seems to be disintegrating and her cousin is involved with a bombing at the Hotel Nacional. Welcome to a world where the sight of police officers shooting citizens in broad daylight is a normalcy, where every day there is a higher body count than the day before, where in the cramped pews of churches, in the creaking wood of backwards Havana alleys, a revolution is brewing. Welcome to Cuba.
A gorgeously written story full of nuance, sadness, and the joy of growing up. A terrific debut from an exciting new voice in young people's literature.
For a young woman's debut novel, Viviana Prado-Núñez writes with startling assurance, eloquence, and beauty. A really promising writer from whom I hope we hear a great deal more.
The Art of White Roses is a luminous coming-of-age story of a young girl navigating the Cuban revolution... This is a remarkable achievement from a major new talent.