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Publisher Smiley Books
Publication Date August 2013
In Almost White, award-winning writer, actor, director, comedian, playwright, and producer Rick Najera explores what it means to be a Latino against the ever-changing backdrop of his life as a Hollywood creative. A bona fide chameleon, this L.A.-based everyman is "Mexican hyphen American" or, as he wryly puts it, "almost white." Recognized twice as one of the "100 Most Influential Hispanics" by Hispanic Business Magazine, Najera has worked with and mentored some of the biggest stars in Hollywood, including Cheech Marin, Jimmy Smits, Mario Lopez, Sofia Vergara, and many more. His funny, sad, and sometimes dark memoir tells his story of breaking into mainstream Hollywood, what it takes to struggle against typecasting, and how to challenge the pessimistic narrative that Latinos can only be disenfranchised victims in America.
Driven by a satirical stream of consciousness, Najera's journey exposes universal lessons, from confronting the limits we place on our imaginations, to the need to take ownership of our stories instead of being mere performers in another's distorted vision, and the necessity of rising every day to press forward-no matter what. "In the end," says Najera, "perhaps it will be the power of the people and art, not politicians and politics, that will redefine the Latino American dream."