24 May 2010

This is it chick-lit

Dear contemporary romance and chick-lit,
It's not you. It's me. We have to break-up you see. For years you made me smile, but really you just bug me now. So in the immortal words of Motley Crue, "Don't go away mad, just go away."
Signed no longer yours,
Tales of Whimsy...

03 May 2010

The Red Umbrella

Call me crazy. Call me sentimental. But I was meant to read The Red Umbrella.

Like Lucia, my own mother left Cuba when she was fourteen years old. While my mother fled with her family in the late 1960s, Lucia fled with only her brother in 1961. While I had grown up hearing about the food rations, conditions, and hardships, it took Christina's book to help me really see Cuba through the eyes of a child. What I found there was a beautiful, tender, heartfelt, story of loss and the ties that bind. I gasped, cried, smiled, and cheered while reading this book.

Dear Christina, Thank you! With Lucia you helped me see Cuba the way my mami and abuelita must have. I loved how you began each chapter with actual newspaper headlines. Each chilling one helped put me there. Truthfully, I feel as though you have given me a gift I will never be able to repay you for. the food rations and conditions. I may drive down to Miami some day just to get your signature and shake your hand.


"It was a sunny day in Miami, exactly the same as in Cuba, but there was a difference. In Cuba, the air seemed to taste sweeter, as if there were mangoes growing nearby or your mother had just cooked your favorite dish. Here, although I was only a couple hundred miles away, everything felt more sterile, like I'd just walked into an office building."