This cover image released by Flatiron Books shows "American Dirt," a novel by Jeanine Cummins. (Flatiron Books via AP)

Author tour for controversial 'American Dirt' is canceled

January 29, 2020 - 3:29 pm

NEW YORK (AP) — The publisher of Jeanine Cummins' controversial novel “American Dirt" has cancelled the remainder of her promotional tour, citing concerns for her safety.

The novel about a Mexican mother and her young son fleeing to the U.S. border had been praised widely before its Jan. 21 release and was chosen by Oprah Winfrey for her book club. But Mexican-American writers have been among those criticizing “American Dirt” for stereotypical depictions of Mexicans. Cummins is of Irish and Puerto Rican background.

"Jeanine Cummins spent five years of her life writing this book with the intent to shine a spotlight on tragedies facing immigrants," Bob Miller, president and publisher of Flatiron Books, said in a statement Wednesday. “We are saddened that a work of fiction that was well-intentioned has led to such vitriolic rancor.

“Unfortunately, our concerns about safety have led us to the difficult decision to cancel the book tour.”

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