Saturday, March 15, 2014

The Secret Side of Empty by Maria E. Andreu

As a straight-A student with a budding romance and loyal best friend, M.T.’s life seems as apple-pie American as her blondish hair and pale skin. But M.T. hides two facts to the contrary: her full name of Monserrat Thalia and her status as an undocumented immigrant.

But it’s harder to hide now that M.T.’s a senior. Her school’s National Honor Society wants her to plan their trip abroad, her best friend won’t stop bugging her to get her driver’s license, and all everyone talks about is where they want to go to college. M.T. is pretty sure she can’t go to college, and with high school ending and her family life unraveling, she’s staring down a future that just seems empty. In the end, M.T. will need to trust herself and others to stake a claim in the life that she wants.

M.T. is your average teenager who has the weight of the world and her future on her shoulders.  To want to do the same things your friends are doing; get a driver's license, fill out college applications, etc. and not be able to is a big hit to one's emotional psych.  

An illegal immigrant is talked about a lot but the ramifications to the innocent I really never thought about.  It can be life-changing and Andreu approached the topic with sensitivity without sparing any details.   A heart-wrenching read with splashes of humor but of all,  a heroine who is modern and you get to know like no other.  Andreu is a master of character creation and development and does a superb job of unveiling her story, layer by layer.  A highly recommended read!

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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The old grey donkey, Eeyore stood by himself in a thistly corner of the Forest, his front feet well apart, his head on one side, and thought about things. Sometimes he thought sadly to himself, "Why?" and sometimes he thought, "Wherefore?" and sometimes he thought, "Inasmuch as which?" and sometimes he didn't quite know what he was thinking about.

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