Lucia Zárate is based on the poignant, real-life odyssey of the world's smallest woman. Pretty and gregarious, Lucia Zárate was just twenty inches tall. A celebrity after her 'display' at the 1876 Philadelphia Centennial International Exhibition, Lucia's extraordinary, heartbreaking story is one of exploitation by greedy sideshow hucksters and a fishbowl existence on the road, from New York to Victorian London. We follow the adventures of diminutive Lucia Zárate and her devoted governess as they grapple with life and death, finding joy and adventure in their bumpy sideshow journey of more than fourteen years. This is an artfully balanced novel that is a mesmerizing tale of survival, resilience, and the uplifting force of friendship.
|Product dimensions:||6.10(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.10(d)|
About the Author
Cecilia Velástegui received First Place from the International Latino Book Awards for her novels Missing in Machu Picchu (2013) and Traces of Bliss (2012). The Association of American Publishers and the Las Comadres International organization selected her novels to the National
Latino Book Club. Parisian Promises (2014) was the runner-up for the Paris Book Award and Gathering the Indigo Maidens (2011) was a finalist for the Mariposa Award. Her children’s bilingual fables: Olinguito Speaks Up, Lalo Loves to Help, and Howl of the Mission Owl have received numerous awards.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Velastegui has woven a most interesting biography, full of rich, lyrical imagery. I had never heard of Lucia Zarate and found her life fascinating. Insights into just how grueling sideshow work was floored me. These people were treated to terrible conditions, and crude mockery, as if they were not human at all, at times. Poked and prodded as 'medical curiosities’ and 'missing links’, called freaks, made to entertain audiences for a pittance, while their so-called managers raked in cash. What petty beings are we… Not only did I learn of Lucia Zarate, and gained a greater appreciation for the full nature of exploitative behaviour towards the more unusual among us, the anthropologist in me was treated to a glimpse of Totonac culture, and vanilla cultivation. Threaded through the story is beautiful symbolism tied to seemingly ordinary events. The lore of the owl to the Totonac, as to many other cultures, and what is presaged for Felipe, the flutist Birdman, and later for Lucia herself. The brujo and the mental legacy he left with Lucia and Zoila, that followed them place to place to place, holding them captive in its fear. I enjoy reading authors of other cultures, because culture surely shapes writing. It echoes values and reflects sociocultural framework. This was my first experience with both Velastegui's works, and a Latino author. It comes as no surprise to me that this book should have been among the finals of the 2017 International Latino Book Awards. Highly Recommended