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Raúl Gonzalez, better known to young readers by his pen name, Raúl the Third, grew up between his hometown of El Paso and neighboring Ciudad Juárez, where his mother’s family lived. Whenever his father, Raúl the Second, would leave town on door-to-door sales trips, the young Raúl’s mother would take the children across the Rio Grande to visit the Mercado Cuauhtémoc, a sprawling market where various maternal aunts, uncles, and grandparents all worked. Each relative ran a different market booth, selling everything from tacos and piñatas to candy, good-luck candles, and velvet paintings.For young Raúl, crossing the border was an early experience of stepping into a half-familiar world full of vibrant possibility. “As you walk into Juárez, you immediately know you’re in a completely different…
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