Denise Holley spent twenty-four years writing for newspapers and nonprofit organizations, including three years on the US-Mexico border. Her work has won ten local and statewide awards for reporting. Currently, she helps edit a newsletter for No More Deaths, a migrant aid organization. She lives with her boyfriend on a small ranch outside of Tucson, Arizona.
Two people inspired Holley to write her book: Donald Trump, who demonized illegal immigrants and vowed a crackdown if elected, and Rosa Robles Loreto, a Tucson immigrant who faced deportation in 2014. Holley met Rosa when her church, Southside Presbyterian, offered sanctuary to the Mexican mother. When Rosa's deportation order was finally lifted, 15 months later, Holley began writing Rosa's story. Then she researched why it is no longer possible for most working people to immigrate legally to the US and how our laws have criminalized the very process that built America.
After Nancy Montoya of Arizona Public Media interviewed Holley about the book, the author was surprised to hear that members of Congress were reading her book in anticipation of a vote on the DACA program for young immigrants.
The radio interview aired Jan. 8, 2018, on 89.1 FM.