November 15, 2010

The Fortune of Carmen Navarro by Jen Bryant


Carmen Navarro rings up customers at the Quikmart, bored to tears. It’s a job, and she needs it. But Carmen’s true love is music: she dropped out of high school to sing with the Gypsy Lovers and land a recording contract, someday.

Just a few miles away, Ryan Sweeney hunches over his books, a studious cadet with his eye on West Point. There’s not a single girl at the Valley Forge Military Academy, and that’s fine by him.

But when Ryan, on a day pass from campus, spots Carmen, with her shining black hair and snake tattoo, his pulse quickens. Carmen, who normally rolls her eyes at the stiff Academy soldados, can tell this one is different. She slips him a note: “Come hear my band.” A romance begins, unlikely, passionate . . . and quickly imbalanced. In an enthralling narrative of obsessive love, the novel builds to a stunning close.

Inspired by the novella and opera Carmen, Jen Bryant creates a strong-minded and alluring heroine in this contemporary tale of tragic love.

Epic wins:

  • The whole book is based off of a play called Carmen. It was really cool to see the passion the author had for the play, and to see that passion transferred to the book.
  • All the many point of views.
  • Maggie: Her feet are planted on the ground and she has a sane head. She was like a clean, cotton shirt that has just come out of the dryer. It still smells like laundry detergent and has a few wrinkles. I loved reaching into her thoughts! Her ending was the happiest in my opinion.
  • Carmen: A paper bag blowing in the wind. You never knew what direction she would go in and sometimes she got blown high into the air. She had a huge heart though and was a really good friend to Maggie. She wasn't cut out for books but she had a voice to out sing the best.
  • Ryan: Stiff and ridged like a freshly ironed shirt (sorry for the laundry metaphors they just seem to work). And as he lets himself go he becomes obsessed with Carmen. I think his ending was best for him, he could be anything.
  • Will: Similar to Maggie, he wasn't perfect but he wasn’t on the rigid side or the gypsy side of the scale. If Maggie and Will met they would be either really good friends or the perfect couple (just my opinion).

Epic fails:

  • It was a little slow but easy to follow.
  • …hmm yeah not really getting anything else that I thought was odd (this isn't really a fail is it then right?)


Guess what? Yep this book gets a high five! Want to know why? It was a beautiful but tragic story that nobody wins but nobody loses. I didn’t know these kind of books existed, I mean black or white, happily ever after or not, I admit I was wrong. I loved how the loose ends where tied at the end.

Just sayin,

1 comment:

  1. This one looks good. Thanks for your review! I'm always a little wary about a slow plot, but your review makes it sound like that wasn't such a drawback here.


Let me know what you think was an epic win or an epic fail, or if you feel like it make robot sound like beep beep boo bop. Really I could careless just keep it clean.