- Sharmili Lakshmanan
Enrique’s Journey recounts the unforgettable quest of a Honduran boy looking for his mother, eleven years after she is forced to leave her starving family to find work in the United States. Braving unimaginable peril, often clinging to the sides and tops of freight trains, Enrique travels through hostile worlds full of thugs, bandits, and corrupt cops. But he pushes forward, relying on his courage, hope, and the kindness of strangers. He attempts the dangerous journey eight times before he succeeds. During his first seven attempts, he is severely beaten, robbed, and humiliated. However, he never gives up. The struggle that Enrique and other immigrant make to reach el norte is harder than anyone can expect.
To travel north, Enrique, like other migrants, rides the tops of freight trains, a most dangerous endeavor. The dangers of the trains are many that include both physical and emotional struggles. Not only are the trains themselves dangerous, but migrants who travel on them must also overcome many difficulties like migrants can get pulled under the wheels while boarding the moving train, which can cause them to death. Others fall off the train while it is in motion. Gangs rule the train tops, robbing, beating, killing, and raping as they please. Both female and male migrants are in continual danger of rape. Migrants suffer from starvation and dehydration, and are unable to go to the bathroom