Child of Sonora

CASA GRANDE — A fictional book set in the Tohono O’odham Nation has won an award.

“Child of Sonora,” by Joseph VanZutphen, has received a finalist E-book Fiction award from the 2020 New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards.

“It certainly is gratifying to get the recognition,” VanZutphen said.

“Child of Sonora” tells the story of two 7-year-old boys — one who lives in present-day Scottsdale and the other a Tohono O’odham Nation member in 1848.

The stories merge to “provide a parallax view of Native Americans’ endemic struggle with the U.S. immigration process, both historically and today,” the writer said.

Joseph Van Zutphen

Joseph VanZutphen

VanZutphen, a community college writing instructor in Oregon, spent time in the Casa Grande area researching the book. His son and daughter-in-law live in Phoenix.

The book is available on and is priced at $2.99


Melissa St. Aude is the Arts & Entertainment editor at PinalCentral. She can be reached at

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