A vibrant, can't-put-it-down commercial novel of six friends--each one an unforgettable Latina in her late 20's--and the complications and triumphs in their lives.
Valdes-Rodriguez's debut novel delivers on the promise of its sexy title, offering six lively, irreverent characters: the sucias ("dirty girls" in Spanish), who have been friends since college and get together twice a year to catch up. The book opens at just such a meeting, six years after they've graduated from Boston University, and takes us through an eventful year in their late 20-something lives. This diverse group of women defies stereotypes. There's reserved, conservative Rebecca, founder and editor of a magazine for Latina women, whose marriage to a preppy, Marxist theory-spouting academic is on the rocks; Sara, a full-time mom in Brookline, from a rich Cuban-Jewish family and married to an abusive husband; Usnavys, ambitious and entertainingly materialistic, who's an executive with United Way; Amber, a struggling singer and guitarist; Elizabeth, host of a Boston morning TV show and a born-again Christian; and Lauren, a feisty, hard-drinking newspaper columnist, half Cuban and "half white trash." The book addresses serious questions-prejudice, the difficulty of winning respect from Latino men-but balances them with enough budding (and dying) romances and descriptions of clothing and decor to satisfy any chick lit fan. The lively, humorous writing is peppered with Spanglish and attitude (watching Usnavys approach their meeting place, Lauren says, "Look at her. She just slid up to the curb out front in her silver BMW sedan.... She's on her cell phone. Wait, take two: She's on her itsy-bitsy cell phone. It gets smaller every time I see her. Or maybe she gets bigger, I can't tell. Girl loves her food.") This is a fun, irresistible debut. Agent, Leslie Daniels. (May 13) Forecast: Major early buzz-a bidding war; film rights sold to Sony-was clearly merited. Expect this first novel to sell strongly, particularly among urban Latinas. 12-city author tour. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information. -- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY.
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1 . Best book i've read in a while!
Posted December 31, 2009 by MG , AZEvery woman has to read this book! describes a little bit of each of us in each character. You won't be able to put the book down once you've started reading
St. Martin's Press
December 31, 2002
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Adobe DRM EPUB
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Excerpt from The Dirty Girls Social Club by Alisa Valdes
I admire those women who buy Christmas presents in July and store them in plastic Tupperware boxes under the bed, alongside the box of wrapping paper (bought when it was on sale the year before) and Scotch tape. My friend Rebecca is one of those people. I wish I had those kinds of organizational skills. Judging from the swarms of bodies I battled at Downtown Crossing this weekend, I'd guess many of you are just like me: procrastinators. Only thirteen more shopping days to go. Have you found what you're looking for? I haven't. But enough about my love life. Let's talk about gifts.
-- from "My Life," by Lauren Fernndez
My schedule follows.
5:15 A.M. Grapefruit, two glasses of water, and a cup of coffee, black.
5:40 A.M. Dance France tights and red leotard, red socks and new Ryka sneakers, North Face parka, gloves and scarf. Walk across Copley Square from my apartment on Commonwealth Avenue to the gym for a 6:00 A.M. step aerobics class.
5:55 A.M. Claim my spot in the front row. Greet the other regulars. Ask about their jobs and families. When they ask about Brad, say everything is fine.
6:50 A.M. Pick up dry cleaning. Put mother's Spanish-language religious birthday card in the mailbox.
7:00 A.M. Buy flowers for the large vase in the dining room, tulips in dark red, to match the wallpaper.
* * *
Walking home, I admire the Christmas displays in the shops, the wreaths with red and green plaid bows and twinkling white lights. I take out my Palm Pilot and make a digital note to remember to buy a present for my "little," the girl I mentor through the Big Sister Association. Shanequa regalito, quizs una cmara digital.
Shanequa Ulibarri is thirteen, born in Costa Rica, now a Dorchester gang member. She wants to have a baby right away so someone will love her. Her "man" is a twenty-eight-year-old who, she says, wants to knock her up. I got her one of those fake babies, the kind that cry at regular intervals unless you feed, diaper, and love them. I said that if she could make it through one weekend I'd give her my blessing to have a child. She agreed, but the next week told me she had "lost" the baby at a party.
She paints as well as anyone I know. And when I let her use my camera at a concert once, the photos came back artistic and brilliant. She has talent, but doesn't know it because her mother is an illiterate who beats her with extension cords. Her stepfather calls her names I wouldn't use on my worst enemy, and I've seen him stare at her blooming body. I think I'll get her a digital camera to go with the computer I got her last year. Come to think of it, I haven't seen that computer in a long time. I wonder who she sold it to.