Sunday, August 16, 2009
The World in Half
Miraflores has never known her father, and until now, she’s never thought that he wanted to know her. She’s long been aware that her mother had an affair with him while she was stationed with her then husband in Panama, and she’s always assumed that her pregnant mother came back to the United States alone with his consent. But when Miraflores returns to the Chicago suburb where she grew up, to care for her mother at a time of illness, she discovers that her mother and father had a greater love than she ever thought possible, and that her father had wanted her more than she could have imagined.
In secret, Miraflores plots a trip to Panama, in search of the man whose love she hopes can heal her mother—and whose presence she believes can help her find the pieces of her own identity that she thought were irretrievably lost. What she finds is unexpected, exhilarating, and holds the power to change the course of her life completely.
In gorgeous, shimmering prose, Cristina Henríquez delivers a triumphant and heartbreaking first novel: the story of a young woman reconciling an existence between two cultures and confronting a life of hardship with an endless capacity to learn, love, and forgive.
Dawn has written a beautiful review of this book. Go read it. I’ll wait.
Nice, huh? Think I can top that? Pfft…I’m not even going to try. This book really is all that. The only itty, bitty complaint that I had was that I didn’t get much of a feel for Panama, other than the canal and the crazy bus system. But that’s okay. The book is really focused on Miraflores and her exploration of her parents’ lives and her acceptance of her own life.
Dawn sent me her ARC of The World in Half (along with a bag of Twinkies…don’t think I’ve forgotten!). If you would like to be the next person to read this (keeping in mind that it is an ARC and also, that Twinkies are not included), leave the secret code word in the comments (anything that rhymes with Twinkie). I’ll pick a winner tomorrow.