Julia Alvarez was NOT born in the Dominican Republic even though many of her book biographies say that. She was born in NYC and returned with her parents to DR when she was 3 months old. They returned to the states when she was a child and Julia credits some of her interest in writing to the fact that she had two languages, Spanish and English, and had to pay very good attention to words. She now lives in the Champlain Valley with her husband Bill Eichner. She and Bill also started and are very involved in a sustainable farm-literacy center in the Dominican Republic. On November 4,2011 in Montpelier, Vermont, she received the Governor's Award for Excellence in the Arts.The photo above is one from that evening.