Have You Seen Luis Velez? by Catherine Ryan Hyde


Narrator: Michael Crouch

One of the Go-to authors for a well-told tale has done it again. I might actually like this best of the lot that I have read recently.

I have reviewed a lot of the author’s books on the blog:

40012112 Say Goodbye for Now 33389838 36469740 35122155

This particular tale had the characteristic charm that accompanies her usual uplifting storyline. I almost(did) shed tears as I walked around Copenhagen with it in my ear. The lead protagonist in this book is an uncertain teen. He is a sincere student, a polite son and reasonably helpful passerby. The day his only friend in town is moving across the country, he sets out on a new adventure. It is spurred by the question an old woman in his building asks him. This entreating question and the attachment to a stray cat he finds along with losing his only friend are but little steps to how radically he himself is about to change his world as well as outlook.

He is an interesting character because like Raymond, I (and am sure many of you), have also had the right thoughts in my head. I have wanted to want to do the right thing. But in times of pressure and uncertainity, I roll back in and avoid eye contact with the uncertain. I work better through online donations and all those other indirect things. Like the time in Paris railway station, a man asked us to buy him a sandwich. I was more anxious about all the warnings I had been given earlier about distrusting the location and the fact that we were cutting it close, I did not respond well to my husband actually going till the sandwich stand and buying him one. I tell this story because it happened just last week and although I think complicated thoughts about meanings of actions, I could not act when required.

The book brings many such questions to the forefront. It addresses perceptions and how thinking about thinking just causes one to just be awkward and apologetic but not really proactive or even reactive when required. Raymond is almost eighteen, he is unhappy in general and trying to find Luis Velez gives him a purpose as do all the consequent events that follow from his search. The story that he takes with him opens a few doors and ends up with a lot of people thinking about their actions and roles as well!

There are friendships and different types of people in the book, I highly recommend this to anyone who likes a little bit of reinforcement in possibilities hidden within human nature. It is not all good news, but realistic which makes the hopeful part of the tale all the more realistic.

My KU list now looks like this:

Each cover page leads back to the Goodreads page for the book.

Crooked Street (Frost Easton #3) 40173806 39720519 40947888 37881225 42800685 4001819342934564 A Merciful Promise (Mercy Kilpatrick, #6) 42121980

P.S: Have you seen my Mid Year Stats 2019 yet?

Book Depository Purchase link (Affiliate)

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