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Of Women and Salt by Gabriela Garcia Book Review

Reason For Reading This Book:

I get my book recommendations from a variety of different people both who are in my life and who I follow on social media. Whenever my best friend recommends a book to me I add it to a list. When it comes time for me to pick another book I find books off of that list that are available at my library or keep an eye out for them when I am thrifting or at a used book store. In December I moved to a different state and started a new job. One of the first things I did when I moved was get a library card. Before going in to get the card I used their online catalogue to see what books on my list were available. After trying for months to get Of Women and Salt by Gabriela Garcia from my pervious library I was finally able to get it from my new library. I have also seen this book in used book stores but never picked it up in hopes of getting it from the library which I was lucky enough to do. 

Content of This Book:

It is present day in Miami and Jeanette is in the middle of a battle with addiction when she takes in her neighbor's daughter. The neighbor, a Salvadorian immigrant,  has been taken by ICE to a detention center. Under the critical eye of her of her Cuban immigrant mother, Jeanette is on the hunt to learn more about her family's past. Cameron her mother has not had an easy life and is struggling to keep Jeanette on the right path. Jeanette goes to Cuba to meet her grandmother in hopes of understanding why her mother is the way she is. The book also follows the early life of her great grandmother and grandmother as they worked in cigar factories in Cuba. This book displays generational struggles due to immigration and the grit and drive that comes from seeing the women in your family work hard everyday. The story brings together 19th century women with present day women into an unforgettable story of familial betrays that are both political and personnel.

What I Liked About This Book:

This is something I usually do not comment on but for this book I just had to, I loved the cover. The beautiful pastels and so pleasing to look at. Now for the layout of the book I found it extremely helpful to have the dates to identify when this chapter of the book was taking place. As you read you understand more what the title means and how it relates and defines the women in this book. I loved that the metaphor was used throughout the book and really captured the message the author aimed to portray. With this book being really short I was expecting there to be a lack of vivid descriptions. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the author was able to consicley describe things in details so that the reader could accurately picture it. Something that I constantly referenced throughout the book was the family trees at the beginning of the book. I found this to be an extremely helpful reference and made understand how the characters were related easy. I loved that this book educated me on the topic of immigration, deportation, and what it looks like to go to a detention center. In some ways this book reminded me of Homegoing by Yaiha G where there are both past and modern instances of generational struggles due to immigration and being Cuban or a nationality that is a minority in the United States. 

What I Disliked About This Book:

I wish we would have got a longer conclusion or update from what happened between the jump in time from the ending of the main story to the conclusion years later. I had become attached to these characters and wanted more from them. A complaint I have about this book is that the characters were not developed to a point where I could predict what their next move was going to be or how they would respond to the different situations they were put in. There were a couple of times where I was completely shocked by a character's response and I feel this is because the author had not given enough about the character to know how they would respond. 

Would I Recommend This Book?

Yes, I would recommend this book. Overall I loved this book and the time I spent reading it. Its educational, emotional, and entertaining from cover to cover. I think that any reader would enjoy and learn from this book. Go get yourself a copy!!

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