Kevin's Reviews > Funeral for Flaca

Funeral for Flaca by Emilly Prado
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it was amazing
bookshelves: nonfiction-or-memoir, small-pressy-or-obscurish

This is a book that is so many things at once–a heartbreaking coming of age, a search for self-identity, a comic time capsule of youth, a fiery dedication to family and friends, a scream for justice, and a love letter to musical roots. I'm biased of course, because I published the book, but I knew Emilly had a special way with her thoughts and words when I read this book in its early zine-ish format. Working on the book has helped me grow as an editor and reader.
My favorite essays are Say You'll Be There (about a crushing show-and-tell moment), Keep Ya Head Up (about her various young fashion phases), So Rich, So Pretty (on eating disorders & bad grades), You Will Always Bring Me Flowers (bipolar disorder), Not Ready to Make Nice (on rape and male aggression), In Dreams (facing near death), and It's My Brown Skin (her ancestry.com story).
But I wanted to mention a chapter that, on my first editorial read-through, I suggested cutting out. It's the 4th essay: Super Nova Girl. It's a simple two-pager that describes a Friday night at home (her older sister out at a football game), enjoying the television all to herself, eating her favorite fast food while her mom folds laundry in the kitchen. It's a snapshot that seems almost frozen in sepia tone, with Emilly's descriptions unfussy and nearly meditative. It seems as if nothing really happens, and even ends with the sentence: I am happy. Now that the book is done though, I can see how this small moment–this mood–is a welcome moment of peace in a life where peace was never too easy. For those pages (43 and 44), there is an innocence that is serene and peaceful. In a strange way, the scene is a lasting beacon throughout the book–a moment that many would take for granted.
Emilly's writing is often sly like that. It pulls you in when you're not expecting it. It's showing you something real and true. It holds your hand like a loving friend, and sometimes squeezes to make sure you know she's there. What a gift.
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Reading Progress

April 18, 2021 – Started Reading
April 18, 2021 – Shelved
April 18, 2021 – Shelved as: nonfiction-or-memoir
April 18, 2021 – Shelved as: small-pressy-or-obscurish
July 21, 2021 – Finished Reading

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