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Houston, We Have a Problema
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Houston, We Have a Problema

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3.38 of 5 stars 3.38  ·  rating details  ·  111 ratings  ·  39 reviews
Jessica Luna is your typical 26 year old: she has man trouble, mom trouble, and not a clue what to do with her life (though everyone else in her family seems to have plenty of suggestions!) After a lifetime of being babied by her family, Jess is incapable of trusting herself to make the right choices. So instead, she bases all of her life decisions on signs. She looks to e ...more
Paperback, 400 pages
Published January 8th 2009 by Grand Central Publishing (first published December 15th 2008)
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Milli Thornton
Looking through shelves of books spines in the budget bookstore, the cheeky title was what grabbed me first about this book. The cover image of a Mexican girl driving with her Virgin Mary lucky charm hanging from the rearview mirror, the gaudy colors and the sassy blurb on the back also gave me little prickles of "This looks fun!" And it was.

The writing style was easy, enjoyable and humorous and the characters all felt completely believable (a nice antidote to the novel I'd finished just before
...more
Angela
Houston, we have a problema is the story of Jessica Luna, a young woman without the self-confidence to make her own decisions. She is tired of her mother and sister interfering in her life, yet she is unable to determine her own direction. Jessi struggles with her cultural identity and finding her place in social and professional situations.

Zepeda writes the flawed character of Jessi very well. So well in fact that Jessi drove me absolutely crazy as I waited for her to get a clue and grow up. Sh
...more
Cheryl
Jessica Luna was just like any other twenty-something woman. She had a job, and a boyfriend. Unfortunately, her co-workers are telling Jessica she should shoot for the top of the career path but her friends are suggesting that Jessica can do better and to ditch her job. Then there is her boyfriend, Guillermo, who is a very talented artist but who doesn’t have a lot of time for her.

Jessica decides to seek out the advice of the resident psychic, Madame Hortensia. Madame tells Jessica to prepare f
...more
Marta hoelscher
Jessica Luna is your typical mid-twenties girl. She has trouble with her boyfriends, argues with her mom and sister and is confused about where her life is going. Everyone around her tells her what to do. Jessica is at a loss to make her own decisions and so she consults a psychic and watches for signs to base her decisions on.

Her boyfriend, Guillermo, is your basic friends with benefits even though she likes to think that it's something more. When she checks with the local psychic, Madame Hort
...more
Mishel Zabala
Jessica Luna, like many women, is having a number of problems in her life. Should she keep giving her sexy artist lover, (but still not boyfriend!) Guillermo more chances? Should she just give up since he keeps letting her down? Should she move on to something better – maybe in the opposite direction in the form of a successful, good looking, stable white man? Should she stay with her current insurance job that she is really great at but is totally monotonous? Or maybe take a risk and do somethi ...more
Robert
Gwen Zepeda's novel HOUSTON, WE HAVE A PROBLEMA is bound to be pushed into some pretty narrow genre categories -- latina chick lit, perhaps -- which is a pity, because Zepeda has written an engaging and fun work that transcends its regional and cultural environment and is quite simply a well-written and entertaining piece of work.

Jessica Luna is a single twentysomething standing on the edge of change. She finds herself confronting the prospects of changing jobs while at the same time hurtling to
...more
Alea
This is a really fun and heartwarming book about a twenty-something's journey through love, work and family. During the day Jessica works a dull job at an insurance firm but all she wants to do is design websites. To ease her stress she's been seeing a sexy artist but she's unhappy about where the relationship is going. Jessica is superstitious and turns to signs, omens, and especially Madame Hortensia to help her decide what path to take in love and life. Mix in a little family love, drama and ...more
Tee

I don't usually read "chick lit", but the title was too awesome to pass up. I'm a sucker for anything with a dash of Spanish since I'm bilingual. This book was great and unlike some other books in the genre, had some real life lessons, (while providing plenty of humor, too.)

There were many sub-plots but it wasn't confusing. The author successfully resolved each one while not being too predictable and also providing an excellent cast of characters, (each one amazingly well rounded, in my opinion
...more
Lisa
Gotta love free book day at work! I picked this novel up on a whim because hey, it was free, and I'm really glad I did. :) It's a fun, fast read and I quite liked it.

Jessica lives her life based on the wise advice of fortune-teller Madame Hortensia--but when it comes to life, love, and career options, Jessica learns that maybe it's best to make your our fortune instead.

Jessica is a likeable character with a strong personality and even stronger voice and she carries you effortlessly through the
...more
Lisamarie
Hm, I am still debating between 3 or 4 stars because it was borderline exasperating that it took Jessica soooooo long to get her shit together -- there was this big middle section where she kept going through the same pattern over and over and over. But I don't know much chicklit at all... is that a standard Thing? Still throughout, there were so many gorgeous little details about dreary office life, internet accomplishments, Houston, racial issues, fashion, etc. So I was consistently entertaine ...more
Amy
Loved this. I read this because I've been a follower of Gwen's blog and writing since I discovered her a few years ago (yup. I'm the one who discovered her).

I was a little nervous, because this looked like it was going to be chicklitty - which is not my favorite, but, in her inimitable style, BAM! Gwen got me again.

This is a wonderful story of the empowerment and nascent independence of an engaging main character.

As is Zepeda's way, she takes Jessica all the places you think she won't, and does
...more
Emily
It was okay. I liked the tone of the writing, the offbeat silliness that popped up now and again, and the poignant feelings that the main character experienced. Overall, though, it was fluffy chick-lit with a twist of racial tension. I wanted to like the book a lot more than I did, because I've been reading the author's blog for a million years and I think she's a terrific writer who deserves success. I just didn't feel like this book was as good as she could do.
Liliana
While i first resisted this "chick lit" book, I ended up enjoying it quite a bit, and wondering what was chicklit about it...It brought some cultural political issues to the fore, without ever being heavy handed, just as a natural part of the story, of this young professional Latina in Houston, trying to get ahead in the work world and trying to stay connected to family and culture. It's a funny book, and a page-turner! Great beach or pool reading.
Stacy
I bought this book on a whim a while ago. It is an easy read, would be a great beach read. The main character is a 20-something Latino woman living in Houston, trying to figure out life, her career and men. I liked that I could identify with that time in my life as well. I did not understand some of her attitude toward the men in the book - maybe you have to be a Latino woman to get her point of view? But overall, a solid chick-lit book.
Yolanda
This book seemed to go on forever. Mainly because I couldn't seem to find time read it. But it was good when i found the time to read it. But the ending wasn't as I expected. I don't know if that was a good or bad thing. I think that not all books having a cookie cutter ending is good. But I felt it could have been more clear. Still, I will read another book by this author as I love all things that surround hispanic culture.
Jasmine
I'm on the brink of being 24 years old and because of this I'm trying to read books with characters that are at the same stage in life as me.

the only problem is that i tend to hate these women. they're whiny and self absorbed, predictable and they make obviously stupid mistakes!

Jessica Luna is no exception. She's annoying and I just can't seem to care about her.
Amy
I toook me a little while to get into...wasn't sure where it was going but I ended up liking it. It is my first book in latino chick-lit but I think it totally transcends the genre. While a nice little romp/light read, it also is enlightening about race relations and seemed very believable. Fairly clean without graphic language. I highly recommend!
Vincy
Much more race-related than I was expecting. It wasn't quite as quirky or fun as I had hoped by the jacket copy. There's not much to say about this book other than that it was misrepresented and rather boring. I'd never have requested it if I'd known it was mostly going to be about the main character's anguish over her racism.
Autumn
Fun chick-lit with a heroine who is working through some cultural identity issues -- she's irritated with typical macho guys like her lover Guillermo, but she's freaked out by Jonathan the rich white guy who also wants to date her. Lots of emphasis on self-empowerment, family and career issues as well. An excellent beach read.
Lfrench
I don't usually like chick-lit, even chica lit. I just don't find it relatable. But Zepeda's novel was different. I got sucked in early on and kept getting drawn in to Jessica's story.
Amber
Mar 26, 2013 Amber rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2013
Handled cultural differences in an honest way. I rejoiced when the protagonist’s sister gave Jessica a severe talking to, since sometimes I, too, wanted to yell at her for being dense. The descriptions of Houston and Galveston are hilarious.

I hope we can make the author visit happen.
Kathy
I read an advance copy. This is a super cute, funny, uplifting book! I read it in just a couple of days while traveling and it certainly kept my interest!! The characters were endearing and there were several times I giggled out loud. I'm looking forward to another book by this author!
Elizabeth
Dec 02, 2009 Elizabeth rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: 20's Latinas
Recommended to Elizabeth by: Latina Book Club
This was a great read! It had me laughing all the way through and surprisingly enough, I found myself identifying with the main character on plenty of occasions and the author's decision to end the novel the way she did was very refreshing.
Aurora
This book was a very easy read. I found so many things I had in common not only with the main character but also her mother. One of the few books that gives a realistic potrayal of a modern Latina in today's times.
Catherine  Mustread
Apr 28, 2009 Catherine Mustread rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Catherine by: Hispanic Book Club
Shelves: humor, latino, texas
Hispanic Book Club choice -- a stretch for me being a non (Latina) chicklit reader, but still enjoyed Jessica's awakening to the best way to deal with the problems in her life -- love, family, and job choices.
Robin Declue
I really enjoyed this book~even though everything wasn't tied up at the end. It was so nice to be able to relate to Houston and the surrounding areas that were referenced in the book. Made me nostalgic!
Jeanette Nicole
Cute, though predictable story about a neurotic understanding twentysomething searching for meaning in her life. Had no idea author wrote for television without pity, one of my favoriye websites.
Melinda
I really wanted to put this book down earlier, but hate starting a book and not finishing. So I did. Not one of the better ones I have read this summer. I hated the way it ended. It sucked.
Lorena
Cute book. I read it while traveling and it kept me interested. I didn't love the ending but won't ruin it for everyone so I will just say it was a good light read and fun.
Dani Longamore
Hilarious! And she did such a good job with pin pointing all the little foibles of the heroine - which did nothing but make her that much more human and lovable!
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Gwendolyn Zepeda was born in Houston, Texas in 1971 and attended the University of Texas at Austin. She began her writing career on the Web in 1997, with her long-running site gwendolynzepeda.com and as one of the founding writers of entertainment site Television Without Pity. Her first book was a short-story collection called To the Last Man I Slept with and All the Jerks Just Like Him (Arte Públ ...more
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