Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Maya's Notebook

by Isabel Allende, Harper, Tra edition, April 2013

... a very good emotional coming of age story

This is a coming of age story beautifully told.  A nineteen year old girl from Berkeley, CA  through a series of events comes to a remote Chilean island to hideout for a period of time until things calm down back in the States.  Maya Vidal has been raised by her Chilean grandmother mother Nidia and African American stepfather Popo in California.  

Maya  is bright, likable and  headstrong.  Her life comes unglued when there is a loss in the family.  The story is told from Maya’s diary and the author doesn’t stint in dealing with difficult issues such as homelessness, prostitution and drug abuse.  An undercurrent in this story is modern day Chilean history including the events around the Pinochet regime and the “disappeared”, those people who were killed by that rightist government.  

On the island in Chile, Maya lives with a friend of her grandmothers Manuel Arias.  He and other residents of this remote island slowly nurture Maya back to emotional health.  While she is there she uncovers secrets about her own family and their involvement in the politics of the time.

This is another wonderful story from Isabel Allende.  She is great at creating characters that come to life in stories that are rich with history, culture  and everyday detail.  Maya has a superb voice in this story so like a nineteen year old.  A very good emotional coming of age novel!

I read a copy of this novel provided by the publisher.


Elizabeth said...

Nice Review.

Stopping by from Cym's Book Review Linkup.

Silver's Reviews

Christine said...

I have been meaning to read some of Isabel Allende's books for forever! I'm going to have to remedy that soon since this one sounds quite good & I've heard nothing but good things about her previous books.

Great review for the Wednesday Book Party :)