'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Friday 3 March 2023

Junior Review: I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter

This touching book is about Julia Reyes, a 15 year old teenager who lost her sister, Olga, and is forced to deal with all the struggles that growing up in an immigrant household would bring, like high expectations, stereotypes, all while trying to navigate being a teenager. 

I am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter handles sensitive topics like depression, grief.

The book starts off with Olga, getting violently killed in a bus accident. Olga was the perfect Mexican daughter who went to church, attended college, listened to her parents, and would never bring shame to the family. 

Julia is far from perfect, and she matches the standards of the rebellious younger daughter.

After Olga’s death, Julia starts to see clues that point to secrets that her sister might have been hiding. Discovering suspicious clues in Olga’s room and a hotel key that belongs to the Continental Hotel, Julia decides to start snooping further. 

Reaching a dead end at the Continental Hotel, Julia decides to stop searching, but Olga’s death weighs on her mind. Julia goes through profound bouts of depression and anxiety, as tensions rise at home with Amá (Mother) blaming her for Olga’s unsuspecting death.

I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter, follows a young girl, struggling to deal with a surprising death, and to meet her parents’ 'perfect standards'. This novel shares the statement that there is no such thing as perfect or beautiful, and you don’t need validation for you to love yourself. 

I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter preaches the message that at a certain point in time, you must move on, or you will be stuck in a never-ending cycle of terrible sadness. While this is an extraordinary novel, readers must be aware that this novel tackles subjects such as self-harm, violence, and abuse.

Reading I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter will transport you into Julia’s world, one filled with tears, hate, yet learning how to be yourself again. Author Erika L Sánchez’s imagery and style of writing will make you want to reach over and give Julia a warm hug. Reading I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter will take you on  the most unique journey you’ve ever been on.

Title: I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter
Erika L Sánchez
Knopf Books for Young Readers, $9.14
Publication Date: 17 October 2017
Format: Hardcover
: 9781524700485
For ages: 13+
Type: Teen and Young Adult Fiction