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Fruit of the Drunken Tree
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Archive: Other Books > Fruit of the Drunken Tree- Ingrid Rojas Contreras- 4.5 stars

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Tracy (tstan) | 1238 comments As 15 year old Chula receives her US Citizenship, she remembers her childhood in Colombia, at the height of Pablo Escobar's narcoterrorist control over the country. In her reflections, she thinks of her friend and former live-in housekeeper, Petrona. She has written to Petrona, and received a letter from her, with a picture of Petrona holding her son, 9 months after Chula's family fled the country.

The story is told both by Chula and by Petrona. They came from very different backgrounds- Chula is terrified of Escobar, especially after she sees a politician assassinated (by Escobar's men) at a rally. Petrona's neighborhood is more forgiving- Escobar has his hooks in her impoverished community.

Yet, they care very much about each other. Petrona sacrifices a great deal to protect the eight-year-old Chula, and Chula shows Petrona loyalty.

The writing was wonderful- it is clearly a young woman's memories, with 6 years' time to put some perspective to the events. The descriptions of the scenery were stunning. Best described, though, was the fear felt by Chula and her family- of Escobar, of the many splinter guerrilla groups, of the mistrust of even the next door neighbor or family member. The story moved well, and has a beautiful last sentence. The only criticism I have is that Petrona's narrative is a bit cold.

All in all, well worth reading- for the story, and also for the slice of history of Colombia.


Nicole R (drnicoler) | 7784 comments Totally want to read this one!!! Do you think it would be good on audio?


Tracy (tstan) | 1238 comments Nicole R wrote: "Totally want to read this one!!! Do you think it would be good on audio?"

I think it would be ok if there was a distinction between the two narrators. It is a really fast read, though.


Booknblues | 6891 comments Tracy wrote: "As 15 year old Chula receives her US Citizenship, she remembers her childhood in Colombia, at the height of Pablo Escobar's narcoterrorist control over the country. In her reflections, she thinks o..."

This sounds like it might fit the friends tag, what do you think?


Tracy (tstan) | 1238 comments Booknblues wrote: "Tracy wrote: "As 15 year old Chula receives her US Citizenship, she remembers her childhood in Colombia, at the height of Pablo Escobar's narcoterrorist control over the country. In her reflections..."

Definitely!


Sushicat | 805 comments This is one for Nicole’s culture challenge!


message 7: by KateNZ (new) - added it

KateNZ | 2672 comments I was thinking the same, Sushicat!


message 8: by Susie (new) - added it

Susie | 4488 comments It’s so good to read this review Tracy. I absolutely love the cover and I’m glad the content is equally as good.


Nicole R (drnicoler) | 7784 comments I am really getting bummed that I made my personal cultural challenge nonfiction books! Maybe I can retroactively change....


message 10: by Jeremiah (new)

Jeremiah Cunningham | 717 comments Susie wrote: "It’s so good to read this review Tracy. I absolutely love the cover and I’m glad the content is equally as good."

I am with you about the cover. Every time I see it I am just drawn to the book.


message 11: by Jgrace (new) - added it

Jgrace | 3112 comments Nicole R wrote: "I am really getting bummed that I made my personal cultural challenge nonfiction books! Maybe I can retroactively change...."

When did you say it was only nonfiction? I don't remember that. Anyway, change it. We won't tell the challenge police.


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