Monday, October 31, 2011

Indie October Review: When the De La Cruz Family Danced by Donna Miscolta

***Don't forget to enter the giveaway for Journey Across Four Seas and Nightfall in Mogadishu by Veronica Li***

Title: When the De La Cruz Family Danced
Author: Donna Miscolta
Publisher: Signal 8 Press
Publish Date: June 28, 2011
Source: I received a copy from the author. This did not affect my review.

Why You're Reading This Book:
  • You like family dramas.
  • You like stark writing.
What's the Story?: 

From "During his one and only return visit to the Philippines, Johnny de la Cruz - plagued by a sense of isolation - succumbs to a quick sexual encounter with an old flame, the attractive and beguiling Bunny Piña.

Years later, nineteen-year-old Winston Piña has barely finished eulogizing his recently deceased mother when he finds a letter she wrote, but never sent, to Johnny. This leads Winston into the lives of the de la Cruz family - a family to which he might or might not belong.
When the de la Cruz Family Danced explores the ties within family and how they are affected by circumstances of birth, immigration, and assimilation."

My Two Cents:

Johnny de la Cruz has felt that he kind of doesn't belong with his family. He loves his wife but she seems distant. He doesn't really know how to relate to his three daughters who for the most part are now out on their own. When Winston comes out of nowhere asking if Johnny knew his deceased mother, Bunny, Johnny thinks he may be able to start putting back the pieces of what he thinks is missing out of his life. Winston charms the entire de la Cruz family but there is more than meets the eye.

I really liked the style that this book was written in. It was stark and gorgeous. It really helped to give you the sense of desolation that each member in the de la Cruz family and Winston are feeling throughout the story. I would have liked to know a little bit more about why Johnny was feeling disconnected. Did he just not connect his family anymore? Is he missing his homeland? Why did his brief affair with Bunny affect him after so many years? I had a lot of questions but still felt like the book left me quite satisfied.

Bottom line: this is a great family story.


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