Those answers prove more elusive than Garza initially suspects, in part due to her family’s cultural norms and her mother’s reluctance to broach the topic, and she opens up to readers about the emotional toll from years of pursuing dead ends and cryptic family secrets. She characterizes her childhood as one plagued by self-doubt, even before the paternal uncertainty, and shares an intimate view of the challenges her family experienced immigrating to the United States. Church is portrayed as a cornerstone for the family, despite Garza’s friends there referring to her as “FOB” (“fresh off the boat”), and she carries that focus into her adulthood, often relying on her spirituality to guide the search for her father.
Readers will feel compassion for Garza’s desperation when her years of searching, including multiple DNA tests and false leads, seem to be futile: “I felt trapped behind an invisible wall: separate, alone, and cut off” she writes. She offers a glimpse into her adult years in the background, chronicling her marriages and parenthood, and the conclusion, though unexpected, will inspire, as she reveals “small pieces of truth had been around me all along, waiting for the right time for me to understand the meaning.”
Takeaway: The emotional account of an immigrant’s search for her biological father.
Great for fans of: Katherine Linn Caire’s Accidental Sisters, Reyna Grande’s The Distance Between Us.
Design and typography: A
Marketing copy: A-