May 2018 Debut of the Month
A poignant, inspiring debut to really immerse yourself in, to feel and become a part of. Hero De Vera originally from the Philippines, joins her Uncle and his family in California, she arrives with secrets, and enters a house with secrets, can the family unite as one? The prologue sets the stage, another woman, not Hero, speaks. Elaine Castillo placed me entirely into an unknown world, her words took me there so completely I felt empathy, warmth, remorse resonating through me. Each central character has a distinctive voice, the different women take centre stage, strong, vibrant, hurting, resilient. The feeling of not belonging, of fear, sat uncomfortably within me, slicing through my thoughts. I felt as though I was being told a direct recollection of events, as though I was sitting by their side, listening, and becoming one with the words. Provoking thoughts and feelings ‘America is not the Heart’ is a fascinating, often painful, yet entirely stimulating read.
'This book is it: one of the best debut novels (and novels, period) of recent years' Elle The next big thing... It has drama and tragedy in spades, but it also has so much love of every kind spilling out of it pages that I closed it each night with a huge, warm smile.' The Paris Review How many lives can one person lead in a single lifetime? When Hero De Vera arrives in America, disowned by her parents in the Philippines, she's already on her third. Her uncle, Pol, who has offered her a fresh start and a place to stay in the Bay Area, knows not to ask about the first and second. And his younger wife, Paz, has learned enough about the might and secrecy of the De Vera family to keep her head down. Only their daughter Roni asks Hero why her hands seem to scream with hurt at the steering wheel of the car she drives to collect her from school, and only Rosalyn, the fierce but open-hearted beautician, has any hope of bringing Hero back from the dead.
'The next big thing... It has drama and tragedy in spades, but it also has so much love of every kind spilling out of it pages that I closed it each night with a huge, warm smile' The Paris Review
'This book is it: one of the best debut novels (and novels, period) of recent years. It is the absorbing saga of one family, centred on one young woman, who immigrates to the US from the Philippines; it's about the toil the past has on us, and the false promise of the American Dream; it is about love and intimacy.' Elle
'Entrancing and magnificent. Don't say you were not told. Dazzling. NoViolet Bulawayo, Booker-shortlisted author of 'We Need New Names'
'Beautifully tender, and a powerfully crafted portrayal of intimacy and the rawness of human emotion that will linger with you long after you've finished reading it.' Otegha Uwagba, author of the Sunday Times bestseller 'Little Black Book'
'Epic in its scale, sharp-as slam-poetry on the sentence level. Profound and mesmerising.' Meena Kandasamy, author of 'When I Hit You'
'An intimate epic about immigrant women's losses, triumphs and desires. A bold, tender debut; its characters thrum with life.' Luiza Sauma, author of 'Flesh and Bone and Water'
'This is the book I didn't know I needed. This unexpected family, this history, this embrace of the sacred and the profane, this easy humour, this deeply felt human-ness, this messy, perfect love story.' Jade Chang, bestselling author of 'Wangs vs the World'
'Glorious... a sharp, bracing, often hilarious family epic about a young woman tormented by the relentless ghosts of her past while in search of an American Dream that is not always available to those who seek it.' Samantha Irby, New York Times Bestselling author of 'We Are Never Meeting in Real Life'
'Wondrous. A nimble, vibrant, deeply moving feat, full of heart, humour and wisdom.' Irenosen Okojie, author of 'Speak Gigantular'
Publication date: 03/05/2018
Publisher: Atlantic Books
|Publication date:||3rd May 2018|
|Genres:||Crime / Mystery, Debuts of the Month, Relationship Stories,|
|Categories:||Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945), Family & relationships, Society & culture: general,|
Elaine Castillo was born, raised and lives in the Bay Area.More About Elaine Castillo