Often I will select a book based on its cover or the language on t ...
Often I will select a book based on its cover or the language on the back cover. But when you're reviewing books, often the cover art or design and the blurb from the back cover are not available. You receive the description or synopsis, and sometimes a cover image. You make a decision and hope it's a book you'll enjoy reading. When I received my copy of Jesusita, I looked at the cover and said to myself, "I probably would not have picked this up in a bookstore." However, I had committed to read and review Ronald Ruiz's new novel, and I would. Ruiz is a gifted writer. With prose describing even the most subtle of nuances, he writes Jesusita's story. It is the story of every immigrant crossing into America in the 1940s and 1950s. Some farmers provided food, housing, and clothing for these migrant workers. Others lived on the ranches and farms where they worked. Jesusita's story begins in 1945. Jesusita's story is not a pretty one, not a story that will make you feel warm and fuzzy. Filled with raw images of parents beating their children, abusing them with words and emotions, Jesusita's story plays out for the reader in a depth of reality often hard to accept. Having grown up in an abusive situation, my body cringed and my heart broke at times and tears flowed. But I had to keep reading. Why? Ruiz wants us to know the history of our country and of the people who came here hoping for a better life. Not all received that better life. Some did fortunately, but others were deported or the goodness they hoped to find never materialized for them. Ruiz doesn't dabble with the history of the situation; he tells it just like it was in 1945 and forward. A well written and inspiring story despite the raw and brutal truth found between the covers of Jesusita deserves your attention. I hope today I have caught you with something that makes you want to read this part of our country's history. And the history of our neighbors to the south, the Hispanic Americans who still fight for a better life. I highly recommend Jesusita. Although I rarely award a star rating on this blog, today I give Jesusita and her author, Ronald L. Ruiz, five stars for the quality of writing and the intense truth shared so well. FTC Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher via iRead Book Tours in exchange for a fair and honest review. Opinions expressed are mine.
November 17, 2015
I was intrigued to check this book out but then when I picked it u ...
I was intrigued to check this book out but then when I picked it up to start reading it, I started having second thoughts. I had my mind made up that I was going to have to tolerate this book as I had committed to reading it. This is one of those books that you can't judge but the book cover or back summary. The reason for this is because I had an amazing good time reading this book. I instantly felt a strong emotional connection with everyone in this book. Although I will warn you that the reason that this book worked so well is because it was "raw". Filled with drama, sex, religion, family, abuse, and heartache. As the story progresses it does get darker with all of the characters and the experiences they encounter. So if you are looking for a good book to read then you should check this book out.
November 7, 2015
First and foremost, I must forewarn as I always do with books that ...
First and foremost, I must forewarn as I always do with books that can be triggering. This book does deal with anger, violence, sexual contact involving children, poverty, etc. There are some events that can be difficult to read. If these things are triggering for you, please feel free to move on from this post or review. With that said, there were some parts that were difficult to handle. The books begins with Jesusita who’s husband died and she is left with four children to care for. Being an illegal immigrant, the work they are left to do and the conditions that she is left to live in with her children are hard to imagine, but I have no doubt in my mind that they are true. It definitely makes you take a moment to be thankful for the things we take for granted. We meet Angie who gets paid for sexual contact starting at the age of 6. I think it was the stories of Angie that turned my stomach the most. Padre Montes – who does not start out as Padre Montes – was one that brought fire to my soul. I found that my thoughts and emotions mirrored a lot of his. How the Filipino men were described and the rules among them (especially with white women) was rather interesting tome. All in all, I have to say, Jesusita sat with me for a few days after reading it. The emotions, the events, the story stayed with me and definitely gave me something to think about for days to come.
November 13, 2015