Gabriela Garcia's Of Women and Salt Is a Multigenerational Epic
The nine women in Of Women and Salt are daughters of the Cuban Diaspora and El Salvador, united by a common impulse for movement and migration, fueled by hope and inclination toward opportunity. Reminiscent of Yaa Gyasi's Homegoing, each character is determined to live free in a society that targets her. Garcia's debut is slim yet lush, imbued with a harsh beauty that reminds us that the cruelties inflicted upon women—and in this case Latinas, are historical constants.
The novel opens in 2018 with Carmen lamenting her daughter Jeannette's opioid addiction, desperately hoping she will get sober, survive. This is not the American dream Carmen had envisioned for her family when she migrated from Cuba to Miami. Carmen writes: Maybe if I had a way of seeing all the past, all the paths, maybe I'd have some answer as to why: Why did our lives turn out this way?
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