Into the Beautiful North

by

Luis Alberto Urrea

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Into the Beautiful North: Epilogue Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Back in Tres Camarones, the bandidos park their big, black cars at the major corners of the village. Irma sends Chava and García-García to Mazatlán so the bandidos won't beat them up, and grandmothers keep their granddaughters inside. Irma promises the women that change will come soon. As the sun rises, women make purchases in the market, not making eye contact with the men in the cars.
Sending Chava and García-García to Mazatlán makes it extremely clear that even if Chava did return to Mexico as one of Irma's "magnificent seven," he's still useless in the face of the bandidos, and Irma's sense of female power holds strong. However, the bandidos' guns allow them to maintain power even over the women.
Themes
Disillusionment and Idealization Theme Icon
Male vs. Female Heroism Theme Icon
Pepino rides his bike to the town square to sweep and clean windows and then to La Mano Caída to sweep and wash the windows. When he's finished, he climbs onto the roof and looks east towards Mazatlán. Suddenly, Pepino starts yelling, which alarms the old women—they fear the bad men will shoot him. He yells "Nayeli!" and then, "Nayeli and Tacho walking with a monkey!" He says the monkey has a big stick. The bandidos get out of their cars, and Pepino warns them that Nayeli and Tacho are bringing an army. From the distance, the women and Pepino hear the "monkey" yell, "I am Atómiko!" The women smile and know change has arrived.
Nayeli finally accomplishes the bulk of her quest, which reinforces that her heroism is absolutely real and powerful. As a result of Nayeli's heroism, the village will presumably be able to evict the bandidos and reestablish safety and harmony within the city limits of Tres Camarones. Atómiko's presence suggests that even Irma was entirely successful in her quest—as Atómiko was reticent to go to Tres Camarones—which leaves the reader with the understanding that the women truly triumphed.
Themes
Borders and Ownership Theme Icon
Male vs. Female Heroism Theme Icon
Female Friendship vs. Romance Theme Icon