The Book: We Never Asked for Wings, by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
The Blurb: For fourteen years, Letty Espinosa has worked three jobs around San Francisco to make ends meet while her mother raised her children—Alex, now fifteen, and Luna, six—in their tiny apartment on a forgotten spit of wetlands near the bay. But now Letty’s parents are returning to Mexico, and Letty must step up and become a mother for the first time in her life. Navigating this new terrain is challenging for Letty, especially as Luna desperately misses her grandparents and Alex, who is falling in love with a classmate, is unwilling to give his mother a chance. Letty comes up with a plan to help the family escape the dangerous neighborhood and heartbreaking injustice that have marked their lives, but one wrong move could jeopardize everything she’s worked for and her family’s fragile hopes for the future.
The Blabber: Vanessa Diffenbaugh’s We Never Asked for Wings is a modern coming of age story addressing issues as up-to-the-minute as teen pregnancy and undocumented immigration, and issues as old-as-time such as how scary it is to be a mama. Our sometimes only semi-likable heroine Letty Espinosa has worked hard for her family over the past several years while her mother raised her children, Alex and Luna. But now Letty’s parents have returned to Mexico, and Letty must step up, grow up and become a mother for the first time in her life. Diffenbaugh’s first book, The Language of Flowers, was charming and full of magic. While less charming, Wings is every bit as full of magic, albeit magic of a more practical, realistic kind. Diffenbaugh’s characters are genuine to a fault and her research into aesthetics weaves true beauty into the mundane. I thoroughly enjoyed this story and recommend it to all serious readers.
The Behest: I received this book free from NetGALLEY. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”