Rose Croft is not a new to me author. What is new to me from Rose is Cabezon. It is different from her other two books, Baseball Lover and High School Lover, yet still carries the same quality that we know and love from her as an author.
Ms. Croft has delivered a book that is chock full of emotions, extremely informative to socioeconomic issues in other countries as well as here in the states along with a beautiful storyline that was full of angst. I was hooked, and I wanted more. Cabezon had me crying, shocked, intrigued, sympathetic, it was thought provoking and finally elation! I was riding a positive book high for days! Now don’t get me wrong, there are many deep themes and situations that our characters encounter, such as atonement and adversity, to get that ever elusive happily ever after.
Vince is surrounded by his 2 bothers, sister, Aunt, Uncle & 2 cousins. It is shortly after we meet the family that his Aunt, Uncle and two cousins go to live in the US. Teresa, Vince’s mom, who is extremely pregnant, was reluctant to go as they were entering the states via coyotes. Teresa decided to stay and not risk it.
Vince is a very sweet boy who looks up to his mother and in his eyes, she could do no wrong as she works long hours to take care of her family. Shortly after her sister left, his mom goes into labor and something happens. It is on this day as a six-year-old little boy that Vicenta Gabriel Garcia Mendoza grew up.
Dani Mendenhall is not a weed to be discarded, but a person with an extremely kind and caring heart. Despite what might appear like polar social status, Dani and Vince are a lot alike. All it takes is for one temperamental, petulant and sullen teen/adult to drop all pretenses and not judge a book by its cover to see this. (Easier said than done). Dani is the epitome of hopefulness, forgiveness and continues to show what it takes to make one’s dreams come true, despite bumps in the road.
‘She was gentle, kind and always sympathetic to people’s needs. But underneath it all was a strength and determination that sometimes left me in awe.’
Truthfully, I wasn’t sure what to expect when I read Cabezon. I didn’t expect it to enlighten me to cultural socioeconomic status, both here and abroad; display the fact that family does mean everything, even though there can be fighting or disagreements, in the end that family unit will unite and be stronger together than apart or what stripped down, no pretenses love is like.
‘I now know all of the feelings that you stirred in me—the hate, lust, obsessiveness eventually melded into one thing. Love. I’m not perfect by any stretch of the imagination. However, my love for you is true and pure, so don’t ever doubt that.’
I have read all of Ms. Croft’s books, and while I loved her High School Lover and Baseball Lover books (hello, John is my boy), Cabezon is easily my ‘All Time Favorite’ of hers. It is so complex and intriguing, I. WAS. SUCKED. IN!! The depth that Rose achieved while writing this book is amazing and shows how much she has grown and developed her style. It was beautiful to watch!! Take a chance on Cabezon and get to know the Mendoza/Mendenhall families along their journey to forever.
5 ‘Seashell’ Stars