Friday, October 19, 2012

Review: Summer of the Mariposas by Guadalupe Garcia McCall

Title: Summer of the Mariposas
Author: Guadalupe Garcia McCall
Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy
Release Date: October 1, 2012
Publisher: Lee & Low Books
Format: eARC
Pages: 352
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Bookdepository
Read from October 12 to 17, 2012
My rating: 2 stars: Nothing special
Summary: When Odilia and her four sisters find a dead body in the swimming hole, they embark on a hero's journey to return the dead man to his family in Mexico. But returning home to Texas turns into an odyssey that would rival Homer's original tale. With the supernatural aid of ghostly La Llorona via a magical earring, Odilia and her little sisters travel a road of tribulation to their long-lost grandmother's house. Along the way, they must outsmart a witch and her Evil Trinity: a wily warlock, a coven of vicious half-human barn owls, and a bloodthirsty livestock-hunting chupacabras. Can these fantastic trials prepare Odilia and her sisters for what happens when they face their final test, returning home to the real world, where goddesses and ghosts can no longer help them? Summer of the Mariposas is not just a magical Mexican American retelling of The Odyssey, it is a celebration of sisterhood and maternal love.

We hiked through the sparse woods, making our way carefully down the beaten path we had created that summer, the summer of the mariposas. 

I gave this book two stars because I neither hated it enough to give it less, nor liked it enough to give it more. So what happened here? Oh, I merely tolerated it. Being given two stars is just as bad as one in terms of mental health if you use my rating system. It's not bad, but it doesn't stir anything within me except for never-ending, terminal, utter boredom. The kind that can drive me crazy, kill me, make me fall asleep within 3 minutes, and make me so bored that I want to cry because there's nothing else to do, and because I blame my chronic cannot-not-finish-books disease that's slowly killing me and damaging my happiness. With that said, I assume you now understand the way I feel about this book. 

I don't want to say anything much, simply because I don't really care enough about this book to want to talk about it. As a student of literature, I am fascinated by the idea of reading Homer's the Iliad and the Odessey one day. So when I saw that this book claims to be a retelling of the latter, I was deceived into wanting to read it. But honestly, it did not feel like it, it was not a retelling if you ask me. It annoyed me and bored me and annoyed me and bored me endlessly. The five girls took turns irritating me rather than made me like them. The journey wasn't fun. It dragged on and on and on and on. It could've ended much earlier than when it does. All I wanted to say is that if Homer's the Odessey were remotely anything like this, I'd stay far far away and never look back. 

The moment I finished this book I let out a big heavy sigh and almost cried. It would be tears of happiness. Not because the book made me happy, but because I was happy I got it over and done with. It's still a wonder to me, 2 days later, how I brought myself to finish it. I was tolerating it for so long, putting it down and not wanting to pick it up. It asked so much from me and I didn't even want to spend any more time reading it. It's true that I didn't hate it, but it bored me so much that I wanted to die. And that's worse. Now I can move on with my life. Finishing it felt like an accomplishment in its own right, and that's about the only good thing that came out of reading this book. It's just not for me.

This review is also posted on Goodreads.
I received a digital copy from NetGalley and the publisher for review.

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