ANTONIO’S WILL, a historical novel by Yasmin Tirado-Chiodini, was released at the end of 2014. It tells the story of the first Hispanic executed on the electric chair in 1916 at the Sing Sing prison in New York. But the book goes beyond the story of a wrongful execution and a call for equal justice. The novel is filled with gripping cultural and historical content touching on turn-of-the-century Spain, Puerto Rico and New York events, uniquely presented to capture the attention and emotion of the reader, regardless of their background.
A child emigrates from Spain to Puerto Rico in 1870, adapts to a new culture, and strives through hurricanes, disease and war to become a prominent tobacco planter. With high hopes, he sends his son Antonio to Albany Law School in New York, but the young man loses his will, commits an atrocious crime, and is executed on the electric chair at the Sing Sing penitentiary. Antonio’s spirit returns one hundred years later to persuade a family member, who is also a lawyer and amateur genealogist, to uncover his wrongful execution. Amid a historical, cultural and legal backdrop spanning three countries and over a century, ANTONIO’S WILL exposes the tragic events: the murder, the trial errors, the desolation at the Sing Sing prison, the pleas of an entire island to save him, and his unjust execution. This is Antonio’s story, but it is also a call for equal justice for all people.
FROM THE AUTHOR
“ANTONIO’S WILL is the result of many years of study that began with family history research. For those drawn to history, anthropology and mystery, genealogy can be a rewarding experience. It is a never-ending journey that can easily rescue a person from the typical routines of life, transporting him or her to the intriguing world of their ancestors. What seems like an “extended hobby” for many can absorb a great deal of our time, even years, as it has with me. We become investigators, history detectives; endlessly thirsty for the next clue, putting the pieces of many puzzles together, often at once. And sometimes we may not be prepared for what we uncover…”
ANTONIO’S WILL quickly made it to the Top 100 Hispanic American Literature Paid Kindle books list upon release, and it has maintained on this list on and off since. Amazon reviewers have said about ANTONIO’S WILL:
“When a book makes you feel things, when it makes you cry or laugh, when it makes you think, then it can be said it’s a brilliant book.” – Maria
“[The author] opens her book with historical accuracy that reads like the finest historical fiction – only this story is directed toward revealing truths. … This is a powerful, compelling historical novel that is deserving of a wide readership. Highly recommended.” – Grady Harp
“I couldn’t put it down. Read it in 2 days and I was transported to the era, scenes, smells, fears and feelings. The writing style is clear and enchanting. I love the history lesson in a well-written story that captivates from beginning to end. It should become a required book for High School reading.” – Victor R. Toro
“I’d recommend it to anyone who likes to reflect on life, learn and think about universal values.” – Leire
“I felt I was reading a little of my own past … I couldn’t get enough of it. It was informative and beautifully written.” – Lizette Valarino
“She meticulously builds her case … each tidbit becomes a part of the story that enriches, rather than encumbers it … and by the end of the book, you realize that you should have expected no less. I really enjoyed this book.” – Jim McLaurin
“Excellent merge of the world of genealogy, law, forensic psychiatry and personal history. … [The author] create[s] a book that is not only accurate on its descriptions, but in my case, as a psychiatrist with many years of expertise in the field of Forensics, very realistic.” – Marimer Meléndez, MD
“A must for history buffs, but it’s also an important book for everyone to read. Pointing out injustice and learning from it helps prevent it from happening again. The more people who see its hand at play the better the world will be.” – Chelsey McQuitty
“I enjoyed reading this book. I like reading legal stories and I learned a lot about of Puerto Rico in the process. The author did an incredible amount of research for this book and it shows in the detail of the story.” – Russ Van Allen
WHERE TO BUY
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