Drama

Infinite Country by Patricia Engel

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This is a look at ‘illegal immigration’ from a different point of view. The story is split into two. That at least is one way of looking at it. The two halves of a family are in two different countries. One part of the story is told in real-time, while the other is the past to show how things came to be the way they are now. There are also several voices lending their thoughts to the plotline. So many variations in the voices and styles should have either been incongruous or overlapped and sounded like the same person but did not. The author’s best work was in showing each person and their own personal yearnings and dreams as individual parts of the whole. It made the reading engrossing.
We have a small Colombian family who travels to the US on a visitor’s visa without too much forethought into what happens next. The harder part of the story is the struggle in accepting and enjoying their respective decisions. No one is happy as the story progresses, but despite the lack of any legal relationship, the parents consider themselves a unit, regardless of the distance that separates them. This was very refreshing (even in the face of all the trouble they experienced).
I liked the writing, the vivid characterization of all the people and would readily pick up another book by the author, but I found the plot line a little off. There were a few turns that did not add anything to the narrative, and some other situations I would have liked to know more about, I would have rated it higher otherwise.
I would still recommend this book to anyone looking to read a tale of people who find themselves caught in the web of their own ill-thought decisions.
I received an ARC thanks to NetGalley and the publishers but the review is entirely based on my own reading experience.

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