The Girl Who Could Silence The Wind
This is one of those stories that can't be nailed down to a single time, or even a single place. It's got a trace of wildness, and a simple beauty. Just a hint of magic, and a heaping scoop of spunk; years of secrets, and a thousand dreams.
Sonia Ocampo has been cursed with a blessing. The day she was born, the raging winds of a horrible storm ended, and from that point on, everyone believed she was blessed with a special connection to Heaven. The villagers of Tres Montes would come, bearing milagros (prayer charms), begging for her intercession on their behalf. For sixteen years, things seemed to "work," but then something goes horribly wrong. Desperate for an escape, Sonia leaves for the Capitol - to work in a rich widow's house, with three other Tres Montes girls, hoping to lose her blessing along the way. Even in the beautiful Capitol, life is not easy for Sonia, nor is she safe from the burden of her "gift." Her brother, Rafael, is also trying to make things better - but his plans and dreams go horribly awry. At last, Sonia realizes she must face the truth. All of it. And only by bringing the truth out into the open can her family, and the community of Tres Montes, find the healing and new beginnings they so desperately need.
This story has some very poignant, even sad, moments. But it also has a rare beauty. Sonia and her friend Pancho have a truly beautiful relationship, and I loved watching them grow. It's sweet, it's pure, it's real. There's a multicultural flavor to The Girl Who Could Silence the Wind, but not so much that it becomes part of a separate people (if that makes sense). As I said, there is no time or place - this could be any number of small towns with a quiet routine and slow, almost forgotten, economy. (Obviously it's historical fiction, but there's no set time period - that I could tell, anyway). While the story concluded beautifully, I can't help but wish there were more.
ARC provided by publisher for review.