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Summer of the Mariposas

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  618 ratings  ·  145 reviews
When Odilia and her four sisters find a dead body in the swimming hole, they embark on a hero’s journey to return the dead man to his family in Mexico. But returning home to Texas turns into an odyssey that would rival Homer’s original tale.

With the supernatural aid of ghostly La Llorona via a magical earring, Odilia and her little sisters travel a road of tribulation to t
Hardcover, 355 pages
Published October 20th 2012 by Tu Books
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Olivia I would say this book falls into several categories: fantasy, young adult, fiction and magic realism. This book is heavily influenced by Homer's "The…moreI would say this book falls into several categories: fantasy, young adult, fiction and magic realism. This book is heavily influenced by Homer's "The Odyssey" and several Mexican folktales/fairytales.(less)

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3.81  · 
Rating details
 ·  618 ratings  ·  145 reviews

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Oct 21, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012, e, for-review, ya
Under the Mesquite by Ms Garcia McCall was one of the most underrated books I read last year. I’m not sure whether it was because I’ll always have a soft spot for well-written, beautiful verse novels, or because it was just a gorgeous and very affective story, but it’s wonderful and I would recommend it to you all in a heartbeat.

And while I didn’t have the same love for Summer of the Mariposas, I still really enjoyed it.

The Mexican and Aztec influences absolute thrum through this story, weaving
Aug 21, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Esta es mi primera reseña en español, por lo que será muy breve. (Intenté incluir acentos: los hablantes nativos pueden corregirme aquí).

Si bien este libro está bien escrito, la trama se mueve a un ritmo muy lento y, en ocasiones, la escritura se demora. Me gustó mucho lo que hizo la autora con la mitología mexicana, sin embargo, la ejecución de sus ideas fracasó.

Este libro no es tan bueno como "Under the Mesquite". Recomendaría mucho, mucho más. Espero disfrutar su próximo libro mucho más.
Guadalupe McCall
Jun 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
I love my cinco hermanitas!
Jul 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Top Shelf Review. Originally appeared in the July 25, 2012, edition of The Monitor.
A Magical Mexican-American Odyssey

Guadalupe García McCall is an up-and-coming Latina author whose first book, Under the Mesquite, won this year's Pura Belpré Prize and was a finalist for the William C. Morris YA Debut Award. Born in Piedras Negras and raised in Eagle Pass, García McCall—like many along the border—straddles two overlapping worlds, and that convergence of culture and geography enriches her characte
Check out this review and others like it at BadAssBookReviews

I loved Ms. McCall's first novel Under the Mesquite. I loved it so much that I repeatedly pushed it on the librarians in my town and now it is on the recommended reading list for 8th graders. I do not claim to have influenced the book being listed .... but I'd like to think my passion for the book had *some* influence. Summer of the Mariposas is different from Under the Mesquite but the same. Both novels center on the relationship be
Nicky Drayden
Dec 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Wow, what a ride. I absolutely tore through this. I loved the juxtaposition of the myths and legends. I picked this up randomly when I saw it on the table at this year's Texas Book Festival, and it did not disappoint.

The beginning is a little tough to get through, because there are so many characters dropped on you all at once, but give it twenty pages, and you'll fall in love with them. Some of the girl's decisions required quite a bit of effort to suspend my disbelief, but it all played out, a

I am a HUGE fan of retellings and, lucky for me, there's no shortage of them these days. Fairy tale retellings are a dime a dozen, but I haven't come across a Mexican retelling of the Odyssey before and couldn't wait to dive right in.

Summer of the Mariposas (butterflies in Spanish, and that's just the first of dozens of words sprinkled throughout the book) tells the tale of the five Garza girls, cinco hermanitas: Odilia is the oldest and the narrator of th
(This review on B's Book Blog!)

We hiked through the sparse woods, making our way carefully down the beaten path we had created that summer, the summer of the mariposas. 

I gave this book two stars because I neither hated it enough to give it less, nor liked it enough to give it more. So what happened here? Oh, I merely tolerated it. Being given two stars is just as bad as one in terms of mental health if you use my rating system. It's not bad, but it doesn't stir anything within me except for n
Medeia Sharif
Oct 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
Odilia and her sisters find a dead body in the river by their home. After going through the corpse's pockets and finding his address, they decide to travel from Texas to Mexico to deliver the body to his family believing it’s the right thing to do. That’s when they’re in for an adventure.

Taking their father’s car, without their mother’s permission, they embark on the trip. Before and after depositing the body, they meet witches, demons, chupacabras…all sorts of dangers. The odyssey these five si
Sue Heraper
Jun 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is an absorbing read – I read it cover to cover in one afternoon!

Odilia and her four sisters embark on a clandestine journey to Mexico to return a dead man to his family, and the return trip to Texas turns into a unique magical adventure. The author uses the legends of the ancient Aztecs as inspiration for the supernatural creatures and deities encountered in this modern retelling of “The Odyssey”.

Although written for young adults, I recommend it to adults as well. It is an uplifting celeb
Erin M.
Jan 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
The Summer of Mariposas is a Mexican-American Retelling of the Odyssey. It was about this insane quest that entailed returning the dead body of a middle-aged Mexican man to his family. This meant Odilia and her sisters had to cross the border to Mexica all while evading the police for running away and deling with mystical creatures. On top of that was the question on all the girls minds. Why did their dad leave them? And did they even want him back?

The Odyssey is such a good story, so when I he
Summer of the Mariposas (Tu Books/Lee & Low Books), a young adult novel by Guadalupe Garcia McCall, combines Aztec and Mexican folklore with the plot of The Odyssey and elements from the movies Stand By Me and Weekend at Bernie’s – and it works.

Odilia, 18, and her four sisters are struggling to get by after their father has abandoned their mother. They’re enjoying a dip in the Rio Grande near their Eagle Pass home when they come across a dead body – hints of the Stephen King short story The
Oct 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing
On a quest to return a dead man to his family and reunite with their grandmother, the Garza girls must face ancient evils to survive. Beyond all of that are the very real issues of life with a deadbeat dad, a struggling single mother, and the pain that comes with it. The girls are allowed to express joy and anger without being judged, and Garcia McCall weaves Aztec mythology and Mexican legends in beautifully with the framework of the Odyssey while addressing the demonization of women by a socie ...more
Jan 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Nancy, Deborah, Cheryl, Karen
This lively book is a mix of genres and traditions, and despite some rough edges in the writing, has plenty of heart. Odilia and her four sisters have done pretty much whatever they want in the year following their father's disappearance; their mother works nights as a waitress and seems not to care what they do any longer. One hot Texas afternoon the girls go swimming at their favorite spot, but when a body floats downstream to them, their lives are about to change--forever. An astonishing adve ...more
YAY! It was so refreshing to read about young characters from Latino culture. I'm so tired of reading middle grade books that have white, suburban characters. I'm always thinking about how the students I work with might (or might not) relate to those characters and life situations. Although one can always "escape" through a book, we learn to love to read when we relate to the text and characters. The Lightning Thief for Mexican-American girls with many mythological references to Mexican mytholog ...more
Tomas Vivas
Nov 04, 2015 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 28, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya-lit
The Summer of the Mariposas is a great example of good multicultural literature. I enjoyed this Odyssey-like tale and how the author creatively redefines some traditional Latino myths and legends, giving them a positive twist, as well as interweaves Spanish words and cultural references. My son wanted to know what I was reading...he said he wasn't interested really, but that I could read to him anyway. I started reading it to him and he become interested quickly and had some great questions alon ...more
Dec 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya-lit
Wow. I really really enjoyed this one. The first thing I did when I finished was tell my daughter she needs to read it. What a powerful story of family and love. Guadalupe Garcia McCall did a masterful job both with her characters and in weaving a compelling story. The inclusion of mystical/mythical beings was superbly done and really added an extra dimension to the story.

Highly recommend - especially if you have daughters!
Jul 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc
Four and a half stars. Wonderful. Magical Realism at it's best.
This is the sort of book I want to buy in bulk and give to everyone I know.
Sep 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult
Great read that kept me turning the pages. I loved her first book and this one is great too.
Tanita S.
A sweetly unexpected, sibling-filled take on the Odyssey.
Original review posted at Kirkus

I shamefully admit that covers play a huge part in the books I choose to read, more often even than author blurbs or book descriptions. Case in point: Summer of the Mariposas by Guadalupe Garcia McCall. Up until a few days ago, I had zero interest in the book because the cover, to me, screams “Contemporary YA story of summer!beaches!butterflies!” Even though I do enjoy the occasional Contemporary YA novel, it just didn’t appeal to me at a first glance.

This change
The Summer of Mariposas by Guadalupe Garcia McCall
Brief Summary: The Garza sisters take off on a call to adventure, much like that hero, Odysseus. There is the reluctance to join the adventure, a sense of responsibility that calls Odilia, the oldest sister into action, and then the formation of a tight sisterhood as they battle all manner of myths and beasts found in the Mexican pantheon of mythology: The Cerberus, Cecilia (Circe) the seducing witch, the chupacabra, and the Lechuzas. With the he
Alicia (A Kernel of Nonsense)

Odilia and her four little sisters have one rule: cinco hermanitas, together forever. The summer a swarm of butterflies takes over their town of Eagle Pass, Texas, the sisters spend their days at a secluded swimming hole fed from the Rio Grande. When they find a body in their hidden sanctuary, instead of calling the authorities, the sisters are determined to return him to his family in Mexico. But their journey will be anything but easy, for wicked creatures seek to ensnare them and the Garza si
Fifteen-year-old Odilia and her four younger sisters embark on a journey across the border from their Eagle Pass, Texas, home on a mission of kindness. When they find a dead man in their favorite swimming spot, they decide to take him home to his family. Afterwards, they figure they can swing by their paternal grandmother's house and see if she's heard from their father who's been missing for a year. Odilia has no intention of going along with these plans, but when her sisters take her father's ...more
Jun 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
While browsing Netgalley, I saw this book and thought the cover was pretty. I didn't look too closely at it but was happy to discover that it featured butterflies (hence the title Mariposa) as well as a group of sisters, five to be exact. My weakness for sister relationships in book is well-documented so I sat back to enjoy the ride.

However all was not smooth sailing as I found the eldest sister Odilia pleasant enough but her four younger sisters were brats. Really all five were annoying with th
Laurisa Reyes
Nov 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I picked up an ARC of this book at the ALA conference in Los Angeles last summer. I didn't read it right away for two reasons. First, I wasn't really that interested in reading about five sisters and their journey through Mexico. Second, I also wasn't interested in a retelling of Odysseus. BUT I've read some other titles from Tu Books, a small press specializing in diversity in children's fantasy and science fiction, and so far I've been impressed. The editor of Tu Books, Stacy Whitman, has good ...more
Mar 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: magical-realism
This is a very personal review, not very objective. Thank you, Tina, for recommending this book. It took me a bit to get into the story, and I daresay if I still lived on the East Coast, I might not have been terribly interested. But I live in this culture now (Southwest, near the border, etc) and it felt real and gripping. The somewhat magical elements interwoven with gritty real life were fascinating. The story is redemptive.(Warning: Men do not come off very attractively except for one or two ...more
Sep 29, 2012 rated it really liked it
I had the great please of meeting Guadalupe Garcia McCall at the Austin Teen Book Festival this past September. Then I had the pleasure of reading her book while on vacation in Cabo, Mexico. It couldn't have been much more fitting.

Cinco Hermanitas! Five Sisters! Together forever. Told by the view of the oldest sister, Odilia, this magical story of five Mexican American sisters traveling across the border from Texas to Mexico to deliver a dead body, visit their Abuelita (Grandma), find their fat
I received an ARC of this book.

Summer of the Mariposas is magical in more ways than one. I classify this as magical realism that appears so frequently in Latino literature. However, the story itself is magically written.

The cinco hermanas, or five sisters, are about to start on their own odyssey. They will meet such characters as Llorona and the Virgen of Guadalupe. Their journey will test their relationships with each other, their strength, and their virtues.

I recommend this book to middle-gr
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I was born in Piedras Negras, Coahuila, Mexico. My family immigrated into the U.S. when I was six years old. I grew up in Eagle Pass, a small, border town in South Texas. Eagle Pass is the setting of both, my debut novel in verse, UNDER THE MESQUITE, and my 2nd novel, SUMMER OF THE MARIPOSAS, fall of 2012 from TU Books. After high school, I went off to Alpine in West Texas to study to become a tea ...more
“You must remain pure of heart on this journey... Be courageous but remember to also be noble and everything will be all right.” 2 likes
“The world could be standing still, and we'd all be just as dizzy.” 1 likes
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