The Book of Unknown Americans

by

Cristina Henríquez

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José Mercado Character Analysis

A transplant from Puerto Rico and a Navy man, José Mercado rejected his early artistic impulses in order to enlist in the military. He is still a lover of poetry and art, and though his eyes are failing him and he requires the help of a walker to get around, he is a staple of Redwood Apartments and a regular fixture at community gatherings.
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José Mercado Character Timeline in The Book of Unknown Americans

The timeline below shows where the character José Mercado appears in The Book of Unknown Americans. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 21: José Mercado
The Unknown and The American Dream Theme Icon
Longing Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Community Theme Icon
Futility, Chance, and Loss Theme Icon
José and his wife Ynez were both born in Puerto Rico in the 1950s. He joined... (full context)
Chapter 26: Mayor
The Unknown and The American Dream Theme Icon
Longing Theme Icon
Isolation vs. Community Theme Icon
Futility, Chance, and Loss Theme Icon
Quisqueya and Nelia drop by, as do Micho, José, and Benny. Everyone pieces together what they have heard and eventually the story comes out.... (full context)
Chapter 27: Alma
Isolation vs. Community Theme Icon
...impromptu Christmas party at the Toros’. Even those who don’t bring anything tangible, like the Mercados, offer heartfelt remembrances of Arturo. (full context)