Tag Archives: Mexico

Review: Tomorrow There Will Be Sun

Tomorrow There Will Be Sun

Tomorrow There Will Be Sun 
By Dana Reinhardt
Pamela Dorman Books, 9780525557968, March 2019, 288pp.

The Short of It:

Vacation Lit is a thing and I am a sucker for it.

The Rest of It:

Two families arrive in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, for a once-in-a-lifetime vacation. Jenna has organized the trip to celebrate her husband’s fiftieth birthday–she’s been looking forward to it for months. She’s sure everything is going to be just perfect–and the margarita refills delivered by the house staff certainly don’t hurt, either. What could go wrong? – Indiebound

A lot, but not in the way you expect. I imagined a kidnapping or a murder or some psychotic episode but this vacation goes wrong in the way many vacations go wrong; small, subtle clues that all is not what you pictured and that life is about to get challenging. Annoying, perfect friends, a husband who spends too much time working even while on vacation, teens who go off to do their own thing only to leave their parents worrying about their whereabouts. And then in the midst of it all, a full staff of servants who become reluctant witnesses to it all falling apart.

I love vacation lit. I don’t travel much so when an author takes me to another country through her writing and keeps me turning those pages, then I consider it a win. I was entertained and the story was realistic in what could happen on a vacation like this one. I felt as if I got to know the characters pretty well and the pace felt right. If you enjoy vacation lit, give Tomorrow There Will Be Sun a try.

Source: Review copy provided by the publisher.
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.

Review & Tour: The Iguana Tree

The Iguana Tree

The Iguana Tree
Michel Stone
(Hub City Press, Hardcover, 9781891885884, March 2012, 224pp.)

The Short of It:

The Iguana Tree is written with compassion, yet provides only a brief glimpse into the lives of undocumented workers.

The Rest of It:

Hector, Lilia and their newborn daughter live in Puerto Isadore and dream of a life in America. As the novel opens, Hector has paid someone to take him across the border. The plan, once there, is to find a job, save money and send for Lilia and the baby as soon as possible. Lilia, impatient to be with her husband, finds passage herself and what follows is their story.

This novel had promise. It opened beautifully and I found myself taken with Lilia and Hector and the small town they live in. As Hector makes his way across the border, I considered many times, how desperate a person had to be, to risk everything for the American dream. But what happens seems almost too good to be true and then right when you begin to question just how good things are, they are hit with tragedy which was all-together too convenient for me.

As I was reading, I got the sense that the author didn’t want to upset anyone, including herself. That she wanted these characters to come out on top, but then knew or perhaps felt that it couldn’t possibly turn out well and then at the end, (which I will not spoil for anyone) she goes back into the other direction again. Kind of.

If I had spent more time with these characters in their hometown, I would have understood their motivation more. If the author had focused on one aspect of their story, perhaps more time could have been spent on developing that one aspect instead of trying to touch on all the issues involved with undocumented workers. And last, but certainly not least…what is she trying to say? I don’t feel as if a statement was made. Does she support illegal immigration? Does she support undocumented workers? Is she saying that the process should be easier to enter the country legally? I’m not sure and I really searched for this in order to give this book a fair shake.

I wanted and expected a lot more because there were pieces that did work well and there were times where I did feel something for these characters, but in the end, no stance was made and that choice affected the entire story.

Would I read another book by this author? Yes, because what I liked, I liked quite a bit, but I wanted more. I do think this would make a good discussion book for a book club though. There is a lot to explore.

Michel Stone

To visit Michel’s website, click here.

To view Michel’s other TLC tour stops, click here.

TLC Book Tours

Source: Review copy provided by the publisher via TLC Book Tours.
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.