Hi everyone! Some of you may not know… but I am Latina! I live in a beautiful island called Puerto Rico, and as a Boricua, we rarely get any representation in books. To be honest, I’ve never read a book with a Puerto Rican main character; which is why I got VERY excited when I first heard about “The Education of Margot Sanchez”.
We have a latina main character with Puerto Rican blood! HOW AWESOME IS THAT?! Well, maybe not too awesome for you (?), but VERY awesome for me! Diversity is so important, and we all get very excited when we can see ourselves represented in a book.
So hey… this review may be a bit biased, but I’ve tried my best to not be biased at all… kinda. Now, without further ado… here’s my review!
The Education of Margot Sanchez
by Lilliam Rivera
Expected Publication: February 21, 2017.
Goodreads rating: 3.67 stars (61 Ratings)
My Rating: 5.0 stars (⋆ ⋆ ⋆ ⋆ ⋆)
Pretty in Pink comes to the South Bronx in this bold and romantic coming-of-age novel about dysfunctional families, good and bad choices, and finding the courage to question everything you ever thought you wanted—from debut author Lilliam Rivera.
THINGS/PEOPLE MARGOT HATES:
Mami, for destroying my social life
Papi, for allowing Junior to become a Neanderthal
Junior, for becoming a Neanderthal
After “borrowing” her father’s credit card to finance a more stylish wardrobe, Margot
Sanchez suddenly finds herself grounded. And by grounded, she means working as an indentured servant in her family’s struggling grocery store to pay off her debts.
With each order of deli meat she slices, Margot can feel her carefully cultivated prep school reputation slipping through her fingers, and she’s willing to do anything to get out of this punishment. Lie, cheat, and maybe even steal…
Margot’s invitation to the ultimate beach party is within reach and she has no intention of letting her family’s drama or Moises—the admittedly good looking but outspoken boy from the neighborhood—keep her from her goal.
This book was the perfect way to start my 2017!
It’s fun, full of drama, and best of all? It’s diverse! I must admit that the main reason of my enjoyment of this book is that I felt represented. Sometimes I could see myself in the main character and well… it had me sold!
Margot Sanchez lives a – relatively – privileged life. Her family owns “a chain of supermarkets” (just two supermarkets, but why not call it a chain to make it sound better, right?) which is why her family can afford to send her to Somerset, a private high school for the wealthy. Here she’s the Latina girl with a wild fashion sense who can’t really seem to fit in. But that changes once she meets some (shallow) friends, who in a way have made her change who she is to become part of the popular crowd.
In the process of trying to impress her friends, Margot “borrows” her dad’s credit card and gets grounded when her parents discover what she’s done with it. As her punishment, she must work at the family supermarket to repay the money. Sounds pretty fair, right? Well, not to the teenager who desperately wants to fit in and has been deprived of an amazing summer in The Hamptons! *breathes* Nonetheless, her big chance to make a comeback is a big party at the end of the summer; but HOW WILL SHE GO IF SHE’S GROUNDED?!
Other than the typical teenager situations, this book deals with a LOT of family problems. Margot’s family plays a big role in this book. A big part of Margot’s education through the summer revolves around her family and the situations that they (as a family) are going through. Not only Margot grows as an individual, she also grows as a friend and a daughter.
Margot’s dad is very sexist… I could relate to her family so much because of this. At one point Margot says “It’s no use. I’m a tiny speck of nothing in a sea of masculine crap.” and oh my God… I’ve been there SO MANY TIMES!
Two of the many phrases that reminded me of my dad and made me hate Margot’s dad:
- “Esto es cosa de hombres.” – (This is men’s business.)
- “You just need to open your legs once and end up like the rest of the girls here, stupid and pregnant.” – JESUS CHRIST, MY DAD HAS SAID THIS, WORD FOR WORD
To close up my review… Someone on twitter (sorry that I cannot remember who it was!) brought up that this book doesn’t use italics for the Spanish language and they thought that was good; and let me tell you why this is great! Spanish is my main language, and seeing it in italics in other books makes it seem foreign to me. My first language shouldn’t feel foreign! Thankfully this book makes it feel real. Every time something is brought up in Spanish, it’s a phrase or a saying that Latinos use a lot, or at least here in Puerto Rico we do! Latinos have a lot of sayings; I was very happy to see them here!
We even get a phrase from “The Puerto Rican Goddess” of poetry – Julia de Burgos
Don’t let the hand you hold
hold you down.
Anyway, this book was amazing, and it is living proof of how important diversity is! Like I said at the beginning of my review… we all get very excited when we can see ourselves represented in a book!
Which is why my overall rating for this book is 5 STARS!