Saturday, June 27, 2015
The Secret Side of Empty, by Maria E. Andreu
Andreu captures rather nicely the sharp contrast between M. T.'s school life (full of friends, romance, and parties) and the grim reality that she and her family face (poverty, fear, and violence), and the corrosive effect of living that split existence. I'm not sure that we needed the domestic violence and the self-abuse themes (especially since so much of those threads remains underdeveloped), but the real triumph of the book is capturing the pain of living a double life. And while one could latch onto M. T.'s story as a tribute to DREAMers, the strength of this novel is it lets the reader draw their own conclusions.