Olga Dies Dreaming (Hardback)Xochitl Gonzalez (author)
Dissecting the relationships of two siblings in a Latinx New York neighbourhood, Olga Dies Dreaming weaves a rich tapestry of familial strife and political corruption against the backdrop of Puerto Rico's most devastating hurricane.
It's 2017, and Olga and her brother, Pedro 'Prieto' Acevedo, are bold-faced names in their hometown of New York. Prieto is a popular congressman representing their gentrifying, Latinx neighborhood in Brooklyn, while Olga is the tony wedding planner for Manhattan's power brokers.
Despite their alluring public lives, behind closed doors things are far less rosy. Sure, Olga can orchestrate the love stories of the one percent, but she can't seem to find her own... until she meets Matteo, who forces her to confront the effects of long-held family secrets.
Twenty-seven years ago, their mother, Blanca, a Young Lord-turned-radical, abandoned her children to advance a militant political cause, leaving them to be raised by their grandmother. Now, with the winds of hurricane season, Blanca has come barreling back into their lives.
Set against the backdrop of New York City in the months surrounding the most devastating hurricane in Puerto Rico's history, Olga Dies Dreaming is a story that examines political corruption, familial strife and the very notion of the American dream - all while asking what it really means to weather a storm.
Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group
Number of pages: 384
Weight: 640 g
Dimensions: 288 x 166 x 36 mm
'The extraordinary accomplishment of Olga Dies Dreaming is in how a familiar-enough tale - a woman seeking love, happiness, and fulfillment in the big city - slowly reveals itself to be something else altogether. It's a book about a New York that isn't always celebrated, the one that belongs to immigrant communities; about money, class, and political power; about one vividly-imagined family and the very idea of the American Dream' - Rumaan Alam, author of Leave the World Behind
'Olga Dies Dreaming is the story of an imperfect family shattered by secrets, grief, and abandonment, and of people who rise up, refusing to be broken. Smart, witty, and driven, Gonzalez's Olga hustles, stumbles, falls, and eventually finds her way. An unflinching examination of capitalism, corruption, gentrification, colonialism, and their effects on marginalized people, Olga Dies Dreaming is a poignant, scalding debut' - Jaquira Diaz, author of Ordinary Girls
'Wisdom, tenderness, and abundant humor... I will think about its richly drawn, deeply human characters for a very long time' - Cynthia d'Aprix Sweeney, author of The Nest and Good Company
'Gonzalez's stinging and knowledgeable commentary about the American sociopolitical order that keeps Black and brown people poor and powerless suggests that radical remedies are called for, even if she gives the personal dramas of her appealing main characters pleasingly hopeful final acts. Atmospheric, intelligent and well informed: an impressive debut' - Kirkus
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“Informative fiction on Puerto Rica”
Having read a few titles this year that focus on African American characters, it was interesting to listen to the voices of Puerto Ricans and their colonial treatment that continues today.
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“Both a love letter to and a critique of Brooklyn”
Thanks to Little, Brown and NetGalley for an advance e-copy of this title.
3.5 stars, rounded up to 4. ‘Olga is Dreaming’ is an impressive debut - simultaneously a love letter to Brooklyn (as Gonzalez says in her... More
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