Sergio Troncoso was born in El Paso, Texas and now lives in New York City. After graduating from Harvard College, he was a Fulbright Scholar to Mexico and studied international relations and philosophy at Yale University. Troncoso was inducted into the Hispanic Scholarship Fund’s Alumni Hall of Fame and the Texas Institute of Letters.
Troncoso is the author of five books. He co-edited Our Lost Border: Essays on Life amid the Narco-Violence (2013), a collection of essays on how the bi-national, bi-cultural life along the U.S.-Mexico border has been affected by recent drug violence. Publishers Weekly called it an "eye-opening collection of essays."
From This Wicked Patch of Dust (2011) is a novel about the Martinez family, who begins life in a shantytown on the U.S.-Mexico border, and struggles to stay together despite cultural clashes, different religions, and contemporary politics after September 11, 2001. In a starred review, Kirkus Reviews said it was “an engaging literary achievement,” and chose it as one of the Best Books of 2012. The novel also won the Southwest Book Award from the Border Regional Library Association.
Crossing Borders: Personal Essays (2011) is a collection of essays about how Troncoso made the leap from growing up poor along the border to the Ivy League, his wife's battle against breast cancer, his struggles as a writer in New York and Texas, fatherhood, and interfaith marriage. The El Paso Times said, “We owe it to ourselves to read, savor and read them again.” The book won the Bronze Award for Essays from ForeWord Reviews.
Troncoso’s book of short stories The Last Tortilla and Other Stories (1999) won the Premio Aztlan Literary Prize for the best book by a new Chicano writer, and the Southwest Book Award. His novel, The Nature of Truth (2003) is a story about a Yale research student who discovers that his boss, a renowned professor, hides a Nazi past. Arte Publico Press published a revised and updated edition of The Nature of Truth in 2014.
His stories and essays have been featured in many anthologies, including New Border Voices: An Anthology, Camino Del Sol: Fifteen Years of Latina and Latino Writing, Literary El Paso, Hecho en Tejas: An Anthology of Texas-Mexican Literature, and Latino Boom: An Anthology of U.S. Latino Literature.
Awards and Recognition
- Premio Aztlan Literary Prize
- Southwest Book Award (2000)
- Bronze Award for Essays from ForeWord Reviews
- Southwest Book Award (2012)
- International Latino Book Award
- Southwest Book Award (2013)
- Bronze Award for Multicultural Fiction from ForeWord Reviews
Press and Media Mentions
- Latin Post: Author Sergio Troncoso Shares Incredible Truths About the Border and Storytelling
- New Letters on the Air Interview with Angela Elam
- NPR Morning Edition Interview with Steve Inskeep
- Kansas City's KCUR Interview with Steve Kraske
- KTEP's Words on a Wire Interview with Benjamin Saenz and Daniel Chacon
- NPR On Point Interview with Tom Ashbrook: Texas Literature