American Dirt is a 2020 novel by American author Jeanine Cummins, about the ordeal of a Mexican woman who had to leave behind her life and escape as an undocumented immigrant to the United States with her son.
Lydia Quixano Pérez lives a comfortable life in Acapulco, Mexico, with her journalist husband, Sebastián, and her eight-year-old son, Luca. Lydia runs a bookstore and one day befriends a charming customer, Javier, who appears to have similar interests in books. However, Javier is revealed to be the kingpin of a drug cartel.
Sebastián publishes a profile exposing Javier’s crimes, who then orders the slaughter of Sebastián and his family. Lydia and Luca escape the massacre but are forced to flee Mexico, becoming two of the countless undocumented immigrants from Latin America who undertake the dangerous journey to the United States, taking a treacherous trip on La Bestia north of Mexico City.