Wednesday, July 31, 2013

TLC Blog Tour: Loteria

• Hardcover: 288 pages
• Publisher: Harper (July 2, 2013)
Prepare to be enthralled by this lyrical, achingly human debut novel about a young girl’s remarkable resilience in the face of loss. Struggling to cope as her family falls apart, eleven-year-old Luz María Castillo retreats into her beloved set of Lotería cards—a Mexican game featuring riddles and vibrant images. Each card represents a different memory, and as Luz shuffles through the deck, she weaves her recollections into a compelling story of love, loyalty, tragedy, and hope.
By turns affecting and inspiring, Lotería is a powerful novel that heralds the arrival of an outstanding new writer, one who reminds us of the importance of remembering, even when we are trying to forget.
Mario Alberto Zambrano was a Riggio Honors Fellow at the New School and recently completed his MFA at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop as an Iowa Arts Fellow. He is a recipient of the John C. Schupes Fellowship for Excellence in Fiction. Lotería is his first novel.

Find out more about Mario at his website and connect with him on Facebook.

My Thoughts:

This little book packed a major punch! This isn't a happy go lucky story, but it is so very beautiful in a haunting way.  Poor Luz's situation is not a happy one. Her family is basically torn apart by poverty, crime, and health issues. She's placed into the custody of social services. She has stopped speaking, and the only outlet for her story is her journal.

Luz (and the title) gets her inspiration on what to write by shuffling through a deack of Loteria cards. She uses each one to help her tell her story. I thought this was a very unique concept and loved the way the cards wove together to help the reader understand what was going on with Luz.

There were a few negatives. I'm not a Spanish speaker, and my knowledge of the language is very slim. Some phrases I was able to understand while others I had to piece together. This wasn't a horrible thing (I Learned a few phrases!) but it might turn off some readers. Another negative aspect was that there were still some unanswered questions. I was left still curious about a few things. I won't go into details so as not to spoil.

All in all this was a great book. It definitely will leave an impression and stay with you for a while.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, it sounds like this is a book that will stick with you for a very long time.

    Thanks for being on the tour. I'm featuring your review on TLC's Facebook page today.


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