Marzie's Reviews > Bruja Born

Bruja Born by Zoraida Córdova
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3.5ish Stars

Now that Alex Mortiz is home from Los Lagos with her family mostly safe and sound, her father returned by the erstwhile adversary Nova, and Nova himself sort of quietly on the lam, the Mortiz family is trying to get its life back on track. Lula Mortiz has been struggling to get past the quite visible damage that being in Los Lagos has done to her, but also the emotional damage as well. As she struggles, her boyfriend Maksim struggles along with her and ultimately picks an unfortunate moment to bail on her. A team school bus crash and a teenage bruja-broken-heart indiscretion with a forbidden canto later and the Mortiz family is once again in the midst of a real mess. It is safe to say that the comunidad mágica (magical community) of Brooklyn already kind of had the Mortiz family and their messy magical life on their radar after Alex's Los Lagos incident, and this latest, um... faux pas, is a doozy. From just wanting to save your boyfriend's life to a mess of zombie-like creatures called casimuertes (the almost dead) wandering the streets of Brooklyn and looking at that big Bridge as a path to the infinite meal plan is all too short a hop and, to top it all off, Lula is in serious trouble with Lady de la Muerte, who came to claim a bunch of dead souls and instead finds a stubborn teenage bruja refusing to give one of them up (Maks, of course) and messing up all of her claims. That scuffle is notable not just because of what happens to the Lady de la Muerte but because no bruja has seen the Lady de la Muerte in generations. (All those iconic statues of her turn out to look wrong, by the way.) It's a complex, dark mess and we see the return of Nova, his grandma Angela's odd assistance and the High Circle's fractured aid as the sisters try to put things right.

Lula was my favorite sister even from the first book, so I was looking forward to this sequel. The worldbuilding in this series is fascinating, and while those with a Spanish or Latino cultural background might find aspects simple, I'm betting the wider fantasy-reading public with be intrigued by the bruja magical world that even briefly mentions vudú (voodoo). The uneven character development of secondary characters (even of Papá Mortiz) in this book was a bit disappointing, and the plot of the story sort of sags a bit in the middle. (view spoiler) Clearly, there are more than three books in this series because Rose deserves her own volume!

I'm enjoying the Brooklyn Brujas series and look forward to seeing where Zoraida Córdova goes from here. I'm hoping she continues to grow as a writer.
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Reading Progress

February 27, 2018 – Shelved
February 27, 2018 – Shelved as: to-read
May 17, 2018 – Started Reading
May 24, 2018 –
May 27, 2018 – Finished Reading

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