Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Miracle of Small Things” as Want to Read:
The Miracle of Small Things
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Miracle of Small Things

4.42  ·  Rating details ·  19 ratings  ·  12 reviews
International tax lawyer Luis Villalobos is lured to the tiny island of Curaçao by the promise of a fast track to the cusp of an already stellar career. But the paradise we expect is so rarely the paradise we find.

'The Miracle of Small Things' is a novel in stories, a portrait of the power of place in our definition of self.

Author Guilie Castillo Oriard is a Mexican import
Paperback, 138 pages
Published August 2015 by Truth Serum Press (
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Miracle of Small Things, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Miracle of Small Things

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-34
Average rating 4.42  · 
Rating details
 ·  19 ratings  ·  12 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Miracle of Small Things
Lynne Hinkey
Aug 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
"The Miracle of Small Things"The Miracle of Small ThingsGuilie Castillo-Oriard is an ode to Curaçao and the stark contrasts and subtle beauty of island life. Like Curaçao's "prickly kind of beauty," the myriad details teeming beneath the surface will astonish and captivate the reader.

While most people associate the Caribbean with white sand beaches, palm trees, and umbrella drinks, Castillo-Oriard submerges the reader into the corporate machinations of offshore banking. Luis Villalobos, an ambit
Pat Garcia
Apr 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The Miracle of Small Things by Guilie Castillo-Oriard

Al is romping with the other dogs, tearing up gusts of sand in the far end of the cove. Chases, gets chased, chases again. (From The Miracle of Small Things, by Guilie Castillo-Oriard)

I won this small gem, The Miracle of Small Things by Guilie Castillo-Oriard, during the A to Z Blog Challenge 2016.

The story weaves puzzles pieces together concerning issues that touch our comprehension and our hearts. The complicity of tax evasion, the ill trea
Sep 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Guilie is one of my favorite authors and this one is a fine example of her exceptional talent. I won't rehash the story as others have done, but I will tell you that I never put the book down and spent a thoroughly enjoyable day reading Guilie's story. Her characters draw you in, her details immerse you in the scenes, and her sentences make you slow down to savor her word choices and the emotions she conveys. Guilie manages to describe feelings and thoughts of her characters in powerful prose th ...more
Susan Swiderski
Mar 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Each short story-like chapter of this thoroughly enjoyable and fast-reading book is like a perfect pearl. Each tells a snippet of the events of a year or so, and they're all strung together to create one lovely piece of work. To make it even more beautiful, the pearls are separated by tiny gold beads of interesting facts about Curacao, where the story takes place.

I don't believe I've ever read a book with this kind of format before. It's quite unique. Without a doubt, the writing is top notch,
Aug 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this. The novel-in-stories format and Castillo-Oriard's writing style made it easy to progress through the book. The blurbs about Curacao were a nice touch, without detracting from the main narrative. I took a break from my usual routine to read the last 30 or so pages, which I suppose speaks for itself.

If there's a drawback, it's that it could have been a bit longer. If the characters had been portrayed more deeply, the reader might feel more connected to them.

I look forward to the
Aug 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The Miracle Of Small Things is a captivating title for a charming yet powerful story.
The novella has a quirky format consisting of 13 vignettes, interspersed with postcard-style descriptive snippets of life in Curacao.

What does the title have to do with the story?
This was the thing that really got me thinking. My conclusion is that the title encapsulates the story.

The Miracle Of Small Things is the appreciation of the magic of nature, found in tiny details like the seahorse, hair-breadth shrim
Yolanda Renee
Oct 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing

Luis Villalobos' career is on the fast track. He's studied, worked all hours, and sacrificed for his goals. His ambition knows no bounds as the author Guilie Castillo Oriard tells us, but 'his intelligence does.' I love that line, anyway, what has Luis done that could torpedo his objectives? To make Managing Director he'd allowed himself to be lured away from a job with a prestigious law firm in Mexico to the tiny island of Curacao, a place so foreign to Luis he's already planning his exit long
Jan 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2016-challenge
This book is like no other I have read. Its short chapters chart a day in the life moving through a year long story one month at a time interspersed with snippets of information about the island Curacao. It's rather like reading a set of detailed postcards and journal entries from which you build the story. Its fiduciary background makes for an interesting read - a book accountants and tax specialists may want to recommend to show others their lives are not as boring as one might suspect? It is ...more
Erika Romer
Nov 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Castillo-Oriard's protagonist in The Miracle of Small Things is the fellow you can't help but root for, as he stumbles through life trying to figure out who he wants to be. A tale of our times set in Curacao, we follow Villalobos as he comes to the island to pursue a fantastic career opportunity, but instead finds his passion lies elsewhere. Set against the decline of the offshore finance sector, this book explores the many facets of identity, and what it means to choose happiness. Castillo-Oria ...more
Rick Bylina
Nov 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I read this book as an ARC. Luis Villalobos’s life in Curaco is stretched to the limits of understanding what is important to his soul in thirteen strong short stories strung together as he adjusts to the demands of his job, the relationships he builds, and life on the island. Come along for the ride but fasten your seat belt; it can get bumpy. And finally, be aware of contemplative hummingbirds, suggesting you do the same about your life. “The Miracle of Small Things” is a five-star read.
Feb 08, 2016 rated it liked it
It's an interesting and quick read. If you like to read about corporate games, strange places and are a diver or a dog lover, this book will work for you. I took back a big learning from this book, and I don't want to spoil it for other readers, but if you want to know what I learnt, privately, you may email me at and I will let you know.
What I learnt will be a touch stone for my future behaviour, so it is a big learning. Thank you, Guilie, for that.
Dec 21, 2019 rated it did not like it
What in the word is this book??? The storylines aren't build well. It jumps from one to another and it isn't clear what happens between. You don't really get to know the characters. The relationships are really flat, no chemistry at all. It's, especially in the beginning, all about taxes and Luis' job isn't explained really well. I had no idea what they were talking about because it was also really boring. The only good thing about it was that it takes place in Curaçao, where my grandma comes fr ...more
rated it really liked it
Aug 01, 2017
Truth Serum Press
rated it it was amazing
Sep 07, 2016
Susan Tepper
rated it it was amazing
Sep 22, 2015
Debbie D.
rated it it was amazing
Aug 23, 2015
Susan Scott
rated it really liked it
Nov 08, 2016
Denise Covey
rated it it was amazing
Feb 23, 2016
rated it really liked it
Sep 11, 2015
marked it as to-read
Aug 09, 2015
Sophie Schiller
marked it as to-read
Aug 19, 2015
Damyanti Biswas
marked it as to-read
Sep 13, 2015
Gisela Hollander
marked it as to-read
Sep 21, 2015
Geralda Buckley
marked it as to-read
Sep 29, 2015
Doreen McGettigan
marked it as to-read
Nov 11, 2015
Roland Clarke
marked it as to-read
Nov 12, 2015
Tim Sharp
marked it as to-read
Nov 18, 2015
marked it as to-read
Dec 10, 2015
Ana Milena
marked it as to-read
Feb 12, 2016
Jenny Worstall
marked it as to-read
Jun 29, 2016
Cynthia Cisneros
marked it as to-read
Aug 22, 2016
marked it as to-read
Aug 22, 2016
Frederick Rotzien
marked it as to-read
Aug 22, 2016
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
Guilie Castillo Oriard is a Mexican writer and dog rescuer living in Curaçao. She misses Mexican food and Mexican amabilidad, but the laissez-faire attitude (and the beaches) are fair exchange. And the bounty of cultural diversity provides great fodder for her obsession with culture clashes.

Her work has appeared online and, in print, as part of several anthologies (gorge: a novel in stories and P

Related Articles

Emma Straub was all set to spend May on tour promoting her new novel, All Adults Here. Instead, due to the global pandemic, the Brooklyn-based auth...
14 likes · 5 comments
“The question isn’t will she know; it’s what will she do with the knowledge`. Luis’s career is in her hands. He put it there, seven months ago to the fucking day.” 0 likes
“Stepan leans back in his swiveling chair, stretches his arms up above his prematurely balding head. “Faulty structures are our daily bread, bicho. I mean that literally. Fixing them brings in good revenue.” 0 likes
More quotes…