Friday, August 5, 2022

Paying Tribute with a Book: The Portuguese Immigrant: Atlantic Heritage Story


The Portuguese Immigrant: Atlantic Heritage Story
is a narrative non-fiction book about the author’s family history—particularly the lives of his paternal ancestors from Sao Miguel Island in Portugal. The story begins with his great-grandparents before shifting focus to his paternal grandparents and their unconditional love for each other. Their relationship overcame many obstacles of the time, and they were physically separated for nearly three years after leaving the homeland. They became immigrants in Canada—a place where the author was born and raised, being something that he is grateful for yet fascinated to reflect on the history of how it happened. Weaving a wonderful tale of the struggles and triumphs as well as the rich Portuguese culture of their ancestry, the book follows his grandfather, Vovô, who was the impetus for life in the New World. Embarking on the journey of lifetime, they carried out a mission guided by true love to carve out a fighting chance for the future of his family. The author speaks on various characteristics embodied and behavioural traits that have shaped his sense of self today while forging a deep connection with his ancestors. The history has been set out for those with the privilege to continue down the path—a sentiment that the author draws out with great detail. The descriptions of events set the scene to take the reader back in time.

Paying Tribute With A Book

It was a fortuitous day when I was inspired by my family history. One of those things that pulled me in like a rip current off the shores of the motherland. Meticulous research, of the genealogy kind, a hobby for the better part of ten years, compelled me to make a poetic and creative decision. I began to write a book, orchestrating my discoveries, into a biography about my grandfather's immigration to Canada. Since he came here, I have been fortunate and privileged to be born and raised on this great land. Much of what he came with has slowly disappeared with time, except for some paper documents and the memories he left behind. Today, I find myself representing a long branch of Portuguese lineage. I wanted to pay tribute and document that era of remarkable history. It would be something to reflect on, to share with readers, and most of all, commemorate what my grandfather lived for. So there I was, falling deeper down the rabbit hole as I uncovered lost details that I never knew about. With each discovery, I found a new understanding about my family, and myself. That was a long and winding road leading up to my very existence. If not for my grandfather’s trials and tribulations, the road would not have been paved as the foundation for my life today. He was an exceptional immigrant. A pioneer of the Portuguese people. He lived an incredible life while surrounded by fascinating circumstances. Weaving a wonderful tale of the struggles and triumphs as well as the rich culture of my ancestry, my book follows Vovô, who was the impetus for a new beginning. Embarking on the journey of a lifetime, he was guided by true love to carve out a fighting chance for my future. This book is his life story: The Portuguese Immigrant: Atlantic Heritage Story.



Devin Meireles
is a healthcare administrative worker from Toronto that moonlights as a freelance writer. Apart from creative writing, Devin enjoys films, history, genealogy, and stamps in his passport. He wrote a narrative nonfiction book about his grandfather’s immigration story and has published many articles in literary journals and cultural magazines. His latest book is the narrative nonfiction, The Portuguese Immigrant: Atlantic Heritage Story. You can connect with him at Instagram at

No comments: