Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Like Water for Chocolate - Laura Esquirel: A Review

Title: Like Water for Chocolate

Author: Laura Esquirel
Pages: 264
Date Finished: August 22, 2007
Rating: 3/5

This is my first selection for Something About Me Challenge. I have wanted to read it for a few years now and picked it up cheap a few months ago at the local bookfair. Perfect! I love when things work out that way.

But, this book didn't do it for me. It was good and I mostly enjoyed reading it, but the book was a little too superficial. What I mean by that is that the character development was very weak, and after reading the book I didn't have any strong passions about what happened to the characters. I liked the way the book ended, but there just wasn't enough narrative depth. Perhaps there is more symbolic and analytical depth to the book, but if I'm not in a grad course I don't necessarily dig or delve into books the way I probably should (i.e. background research, textual research, analytical research, blah blah blah).

The story is of Tita, the youngest daughter of Mama Elena who has to give up her lover, Pedro, due to a family tradition that the youngest daughter must stay home with the mother and take care of her until she dies. Once Mama Elena makes her proclamation that Pedro cannot marry Tita, he chooses to marry Rosaura, the oldest sister to still remain close to Tita.

What I liked most about this book is its focus on food (which I am addicted to) and the passions it creates within people. There was a little touch of magical realism, which I also really enjoyed. The food that Tita created often reflected her moods and emotions causing people to become violently ill when she was sad or euphoric when Tita was exhibiting the same emotions. For me this is where the depth of the novel comes from, but unfortunately the only place.


MyUtopia said...

Thanks for the review. I think I am going to have to pass on this one.

Trish said...

Kelly - Yes, I was a little disappointed, but it was a quick read so not much time was spent on it. It was good, just not great.

naida said...

Good review Trish. I actually have this book, but havent read it yet.

Trish said...

Naida, if you have it read it! It is farily quick and easy. I hope you enjoy it!

Webster Twelb said...

I did think this book was good. And I did enjoyed it.

Trish said...

Webster - I'm glad you enjoyed this one. I guess maybe I'm a picky reader! :)