Today is my stop on the Historically Inaccurate book tour! I received this arc from the team at Colored Pages Bookish Tour. Check them out if you’re a fellow book blogger.
Historically Inaccurate by Shay Bravo is a new adult fiction novel that’s out everywhere September 29.
Soledad just wants things to go back to normal after her mother’s deportation she’s had to move homes, switch schools, and adjust to life without her. When Sol decides to join her College’s history club she doesn’t expect to have to sneak into a house and steal a fork. However, Sol is caught by Ethan Winston a resident of the house and the chance encounter forever changes her life.
To celebrate it’s release I thought I turn some of my favorite quotes into graphics that you may download if you please.
Hey book lovers! It’s that time of year again when the weather cools down, sweaters come out, and leaves begin to fall. But with the start of Autumn also comes the start of Latinx Heritage Month! In case you didn’t know, Latinx Heritage Month spans from September 15 to October 15 and if you need some ideas on what books to pick up this month, keep on reading.
As Latinx heritage month comes to a close I thought I would share my thoughts on the books I have read for this month.
Rating: 5 out of 5.
Don’t Date Rosa Santos has a special place in my heart. I really loved this book because of it’s small town setting. Because Rosa grows up in Port Corral she knows everyone in town and is a very helpful neighbor. The small town in this book reminded me of Star Hallows and I hope to someday find a small town like this. Additionally, the fact that the love interest Alex is both a sailor and a baker made me just as happy.
Rating: 4 out of 5.
We Set the Dark on Fire is a book that I didn’t know I needed into my life until I read it. A dystopian, romance and spy narrative, We Set the Dark on Fire is all of these things. I really loved this because the main character Dani is such a bad bitch! Dani really tries to follow the rules of her society but when her husband decides he rather have a trophy wife and not an equal it really pushes Dani to turn against him. I really can’t wait to see what the next book has to offer.
Rating: 4 out of 5.
Bruja Born is a book that I began reading at the beginning of the year was able to finish. Jumping back into this book was not difficult I love the world that Cordova has created and I will definitely read more of her books in the future.
Rating: 3 out of 5.
Isabel Allende writing is beautiful and captivating. I loved the Trueba women in the house of the spirits especially Clara and her unknown dog/wolf/ mythical being hybrid Barrabas. That being said The House of the Spirits was not the book for me I really wanted to love this book and maybe I would have if Esteban wasn’t so much of a caca head.
Rating: 5 out of 5.
Corazón was a book that felt like coming home. I loved Salgado’s descriptive writing and the little anecdotes of her daily life that she turns into poetry. I love the way that Yesika chose to share her corner of Los Angles with nostalgia and to what it is today.
After spending a whole month reading nothing but books written by Latinx authors I noticed that the border was a common theme between all these books. Even though Bruja Born and and We set the Dark on Fire are both fantasy novel there was still this presence of a border.
Although the border theme in Bruja Born is not presence in a way that one would conventional think. I argue that it is still very much presence. The supernatural creatures in this novel must not reveal themselves to humans, instead the brujas practice in secret. In this sense the Mortiz sister split themselves away from what they are as brujas in order to not draw attention to themselves. On top of that, the Mortiz family is latinx and also experience the struggles as people of color.
We Set the Dark Fire interweaves the border narrative into the novel with characters who have had to cross a border into Medio for better opportunities. However, during this crossing one of the characters witnessing something extremely traumatic while the other character remembers her own crossing and they both bond over it.
Rosa Santos lives with the small snippets that her grandmother has shared with her of Cuba and as she enters adulthood she dreams of one day visiting the Island that caused so much joy and sorrow for her family.
When a dictator takes control in Chile, Blanca and Pedro flee the country because it is no longer safe for Pedro, a communist sympathizer, to live there. Additionally, Alba is also given the opportunity to flee her country she decides to stay even though she is in danger as well.
Lastly, Salgado’s Corazón yearns for a El Salvador from her memories and a Silverlake before it was gentrified. Salgado remembers eating mangos in El Salvador and later eating them with her lover this common link between both countries is not coincidental. I believe Salgado links them together to highlight the longing for El Salvador.
This border theme is saddening and highlights that border trauma is something that runs through generations. After discovering this link between the novels I was reminded of Gloria Anzaldua’s Borderlands. In this book, Anzaldua offers many great points that resonated with me but the one quote that has stuck with me is as follows:
Have you noticed this theme or other themes during Latinx heritage month? If so leave your thoughts below in the comments I would love to read them.
I have been following Yesika Salgado since the release
of Corazón. I loved Yesika’s personality and the small snippets of poems she
shared on her Instagram, convinced me that I needed to add this book to my
list. A few years pass, I find copies of Corazón at my college bookstore and
contemplate buying a copy. I decide not to. Yesika releases Tesoro in 2018 and
Hermosa this year.
Finally, I decide to purchase Corazón after catching a
sale in September. And I wish I had read it while I was in college and yearning
for Latinx voices in literature.
Corazón contains a collection of love poems ranging
from ex-lovers, family, loss, El Salvador, and Yesika’s life in the Los Angeles
neighborhood of Silverlake. But most importantly, Corazón explores Yesika’s
life as a fat, brown, Salvadorean, poet. Yesika provides a very unique and
much-needed voice to poetry.
The majority of Corazón’s poems deal with ex-lovers
ranging from fuck boys to happy and hard moments in relationships. However,
Corazón did not speak to me on the romantic level.
I have never had to heal from a breakup, nor have I
spent nights missing an ex, however, the nostalgic elements of Corazón, touched
my heart. These moments include drinking café con conchas, watching parents
carefully slice thorns off of nopales, and even picking Mangos at a
grandparent’s house. These are all moments I have of my childhood. Although
Yesika’s memories are of Salvador, and mine is of Mexico, I think this
resemblance in our lives is pretty cool.
One of the reasons I loved Corazón, was that Yesika
has a way of capturing moments that make you feel like you lived through them
By dividing Corazón into different sections, poems
follow Yesika’s path to heal herself. In this sense Corazón is very similar to
Rupi Kaur’s, “Milk and Honey” and for fans of that collection I would recommend
Bruja Born is the second installment of the Brooklyn Brujas series.
The series follows the Mortiz family, a family of
three sisters and their mother. During the first book of the series, Labyrinth
Lost middle sister, Alex, struggles to come to terms with her identity as a
bruja and on her death day she cast a spell that accidentally sends her whole
family to the underworld. Alex and Nova, another brujo, both travel to the
underworld to free her family.
Bruja Born is Lula’s story and it begins with Lula trying to readjust after living in the underworld. Lula is struggling, and she becomes even more stressed when her boyfriend, Maks unexpectedly breaks up with her right before his soccer game. On the bus ride over to his game, the group of soccer player and cheerleader are involved in a tragic accident that kills everyone on board. Lula survives because her family combines their powers to heal her while she’s in the hospital. Lula is heartbroken to learn that Maks is in a coma and healing him might end up doing more harm than good, but Lula convinces her sisters to help her bring him back to life but upsetting the balance of nature comes with huge consequences. Lula ends up pissing off Death herself.
Lula’s inability to let go of her relationship to Maks is one of the main plot points of this book. Although, Maks clearly ended things with her the night of the accident. After he is brought back to life, both of them act as if nothing happened and go back to somewhat being in a relationship.
Maybe I am overanalyzing this a bit too much, considering Maks, conveniently does not remember the accident but I thought it was odd that he would not remember what happened before the accident.
One of the things I really enjoyed about Bruja born is that Death is a woman, which is rare in pop culture and other stories that make Death into a character. This depiction of death reminded me of the Earth mother goddess from Aztec mythology, Coatlicue, as she is also the deity of life and death. Although physically, the two goddesses look nothing alike, I believe they are both meant to be unnerving. La Muerte is not a kind diety she is mostly angry at Lula throughout this book, rightfully so, but towards the end of the novel, La Muerte ends up helping Lula. Which made me a little less of afraid of her.
Hooray, Nova gets a redemption arc! I won’t spoil what he did in Labyrinth lost but homeboy really had a lot of atoning to do. I’m curious to see how his story evolves in the next book.
Something I found a bit off about this sequel was the
introduction of other supernatural creatures. I need to refresh my memory of Labyrinth
lost because I don’t remember the sisters ever mentioning the existence of
other supernatural creatures.
Additionally, Lula gets another love interest, but his
introduction is very brief that I forgot he existed. When Rhett is introduced
again and positioned to be the love interest I felt thrown off. The two have
one scene together in which they decide to kind of flirt before jumping back
into the action. It was a very fast enemy to friends’ transition and I
personally did not feel the chemistry between the two. Maybe I’ll see it more
in the next book.
I really love that that the Mortiz sisters are proud of their roots and won’t let anyone disrespect them by calling them witches because they are brujas.
When you think witch, you think Hogwarts or some other European tradition of witchcraft. One of the main reasons I enjoy this series is that Cordova blends different religions and traditions from different Latinx cultures to create this world. I am here for this kind of representation! Truthfully, the Mortiz sisters are not witches because their world revolves around the traditions and legacies of Latinx cultures.
I give Bruja Born 4 Stars because it’s awesome. Definitely a good read for Latinx heritage month.