On Dec. 30, 1960, Marisella Veiga, her mother, and two brothers boarded a plane from Havana to Miami. Her father fled a few months later, joining his family with 14 U. S. cents in his pocket and an understanding that he would never see his homeland again. Needing work and thanks to a host family's sponsorship, the Veigas left Spanish-speaking, subtropical South Florida for the frozen world of St. Paul, Minnesota.

In “We Carry Our Homes With Us: A Cuban American Memoir,” writer, poet, journalist, and teacher Veiga tenderly describes “being of two worlds but an outsider to both,” and the exile family's courageous efforts to survive, and then thrive, in their adopted home, even if it meant leaving behind their beloved Cuba.

Marisella Veiga now lives in St. Augustine. She will sign copies of her memoir at Downtown Books from 1 to 3 p.m. this Saturday, Oct. 28. All proceeds from the event will go to The American Red Cross, to benefit people affected by Hurricane Maria.