Where I share my love of books with reviews, features, giveaways and memes. Family and needlepoint are thrown in from time to time.


Friday, March 26, 2010

Waking Up in the Land of Glitter by Kathy Cano-Murillo (Book Review)

Title: Waking Up in the Land of Glitter
Author: Kathy Cano-Murillo
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing

About the book:  With glue guns, glitter, twigs, or yarn, the ordinary can become extraordinary. . .especially at La Pachanga. Owned by Estrella "Star" Esteban's family, the restaurant has a rep for two things: good food and great art.  La Pachanga brings people together -- even when it looks like they couldn't be further apart.

One ill-fated evening, Star jeopardizes her family's business, her relationship with her boyfriend, and her future career.  To redeem herself , she agrees to participate in a national craft competition, teaming up with her best friend, Ofelia -- a secretly troubled mother whose love for crafting borders on obsession; and local celebrity Chloe Chavez -- a determined television personality with more than one skeleton in her professional closet. If these unlikely allies can set aside their differences, they'll find strength they never knew they had, and learn that friendship, like crafting, is truly an art form.

My thoughts:  I really enjoyed this book - and not just because it combined two of my favorite things - reading and crafts.  Star is very much a free spirit.  She lives at home and works at her family's restaurant, doing press releases for the art shows they host.  Her life isn't very demanding, and she doesn't really have a lot of tough decisions to make, so when she suspects Theo, her best friend, is about to propose - it kind of causes her to lose a little control.  She ends up getting drunk with her cousin Maria Juana (I laughed too) and doing some things that she is not too proud of.  These things cause her to lose Theo and for her parents to lose their faith/trust in her.  Her dad basically tells her she has 6 months to get her act together - working somewhere other than La Pachanga.

Star gets involved with the Craft Olympics, as La Pachanga is in charge of the center pieces for the tables - 200 of them. . .  Olfie jumps right in to help, but her ideas are not very attractive.  No one is willing to tell Olfie that her crafts and awful, as she tends to melt down.  Olfie has been struggling with being a good enough wife and mother her entire marriage.  It doesn't help that her mother-in-law is always there to help out, and does things much better than she ever hopes too.  Her husband and daughter both love her unconditionally though, and do not discourage her crafting.

Chloe Chavez and Star did not get off to a good start the first time they met.  When they discover they are both going to be making the centerpieces together, you think that sparks are going to fly.  But together with Benecio, a teenager, who with his passion for fashion hopes to score a booth at the craft olympics, they come up with an idea and begin the process of making centerpieces.  Unfortunately, their individual lives are each spiralling out of control and they each have to make some tough decisions before they can begin the process of starting over.

Waking Up in the Land of Glitter
Publisher/Publication Date: Grand Central Publishing, March 2010
ISBN: 978-0-446-50924-4
336 pages


bermudaonion said...

This sounds like it has a little more depth than I suspected from the title. Great review!

Heather said...

how wonderful to find your review today. i am planning to start this book as soon as I can stop reading blogs and pull myself away from my computer. I skimmed a bit of your review and will come back and read it when I am done.

Heather said...

have posted my review of this book and added a link to yours.


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