Goodreads Monday is a weekly meme that was started by @Lauren’s Page Turners. This meme is quite easy to follow – just randomly pick a book from your to-be-read list and give the reasons why you want to read it. It is that simple.

This week’s book:

How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents by Julia Alvarez

Blurb from Goodreads

Uprooted from their family home in the Dominican Republic, the four Garcia sisters – Carla, Sandra, Yolanda, and Sofia – arrive in New York City in 1960 to find a life far different from the genteel existence of maids, manicures, and extended family they left behind. What they have lost –and what they find– is revealed in the fifteen interconnected stories that comprise this exquisite first novel. Just as it is a feature of the immigrant experience to always be looking back, the novel begins with thirty-nine-year-old Yolanda’s return to the Island in “Antojos” (“Cravings”) and moves magically backward in time to the final days before the exile that is to transform the girls’ lives. Along the way we witness their headlong plunge into the American mainstream, but although the girls try to distance themselves from the Island by ironing their hair, forgetting their Spanish, and meeting boys unchaperoned, they remain forever caught between the old world and the new. With bright humor and rare insight, Julia Alvarez vividly evokes the tensions and joys of belonging to two distinct cultures in a novel that is utterly authentic and full of irrepressible spirit.

Why I Want To Read It

First of all, I want to greet everyone a happy Monday, nearly everyone’s least favorite day of the week because it signals the start of the work week (not unless you work in the Middle East where work week starts during Sundays). On a brighter side, Mondays can be seen as the start for something new or something better. It represents a new week, a new start, a point where we can start afresh. It all depends on one’s perspective I guess. Nonetheless, I am hoping and praying that everyone is safe from the virus and is doing great. I hope you all had a great start to the week. If not, I hope things will start looking up for you in the coming days.

As it is Monday, it’s time for another Goodreads Monday update. This is my first Goodreads Monday update for May. For May, I have decided to venture into another part of the vast world of literature. From Africa (in March) to Asia (in April), I am travelling to Latin American and the Caribbean in search for amazing reads. To keep in line with the primary theme of my reading month, I will be featuring works by Latin American and Caribbean writers in my Goodreads Monday post. For this week’s update, I am featuring a book I recently purchased, Dominican American writer Julia Alvarez’s debut novel, How The Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents.

I think my first encounter with Julia Alvarez was through must-read lists. Her novel, In the Time of the Butterflies, kept appearing in these lists. However, I simply shrugged it off. My second encounter with her was in early 2020. While searching for books to include in my 2020 Books I Look Forward to List, her latest work, Afterlife, was repeatedly mentioned as a highly anticipated 2020 novel. I added the book to my list but, unfortunately, it was the only book in my list that I was not able to purchase and read. I know, I have such rotten luck when it comes to Julia Alvarez. Things changed in 2021 when I managed to snag a copy of her novel, How The Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents.

Prior to purchasing the book, I have read some glowing reviews of the novel. It is about a subject we are familiar with – the immigrant experience. I can’t want to delve into this familiar subject but now, through the lenses of an author whose works I have never read before. I became doubly excited when I learned that it was her debut work (I just learned about it today in fact, haha). This makes it even more imperative for me to read the novel before immersing in her other decorated works. Even though I just bought the book, I have included it in my May reading list.

How about you fellow reader, what book do you want to read? I hope you can share it in the comment box. For now, happy reading! Have a great week ahead!