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This book was given to me by the publisher in return for an honest review. Jan 15, Rincey rated it really liked it Shelves: Apr 09, Carole rated it really liked it Shelves: women-s-fiction , cultural , library-book , read I liked this story of Soli, a young girl who leaves Mexico for a better life in America.
On her way she meets Checo, and ends up pregnant as she arrives in the States. Her cousin helps her find a job cleaning for a wealthy family in Berkeley CA.
She delivers a baby boy named Ignacio Across town, a young couple are trying unsuccessfully to conceive. When Soli and her cousin are caught by immigration, baby Ignacio is sent to foster care.
I found I was torn between the 2 Mothers who loved the little boy, and it was hard to choose who should keep him.
A relevant story in today's time, one I'd recommend. Sep 19, madamescozycorner rated it liked it. If you feel like you need TW's, definetly check them out, if you don't want to be spoiled though, don't read until the end.
This was one heavy read for me. It literally took me several months to finish. I only could read in small doses, because this book was really depressing me and also triggering some of my own insecurities.
About creating a family. Though my problems lie elsewhere, but some of the usual phrases by es 3. Though my problems lie elsewhere, but some of the usual phrases by especially the mother of one of the main characters, were really bugging me.
They are sentences I get to hear by some of my family members over and over again as well, regarding a woman's 'one true responsibility': bear a child into this world.
The story follow's two perspectives actually theee,but I'll count the married couple Rishi and Kavvya as one perspective for now.
Kavvya really wants to have a child. After several failed tries, she and her husband Rishi decide to adopt. The book follows their journey.
Then there is Solimar. She flees from Mexico as a non registered to Anwrica. We follow her starting from Mexico over the border to America.
Reading about all of her struggles and what she had to experience was really not easy. Once in America, Soli is pregnant and bears a cute little baby boy called Ignacio.
Due to circumstance and a system that seems to be against Soli no matter what she does or tries, Ignacio ends up in Kavvya's and Rishi's custody.
I feel like the book, no matter with whom Ignacio wouldhave ended up, would have felt unfair. This got my feelings worked up and in a mix of relief and sadness and anger, I closed the book.
I couldn't decide whether I was ok with that ending. Reading the Afterword, made me understand, that there wasn't one correct outcome.
That is life I guess. Sometimes you get hurt and it is unfair. The writing in itself was sometimes very lengthy and slowly progressing.
Still it didn't feel boring. We just follow the story in a slower pace and the story builds up for both perspectives.
We get to know the struggles and heartbreaks of both sides and thus build up understanding and empathy towards both sides. I think it was not only intentional by the author, but also necessary to make the reader feel what they'll surely feel at the end.
The book definetly left me with very mixed feelings. And it is not my usual read and tbh, not a book I'd pick up again very soon.
Not because I disliked it, but because it just felt to confusing for my own emotional state at this moment in my life. Trigger Warnings: Rape, Miscarriage, physical abuse, death, racism, abduction.
Oct 24, Lorilin rated it it was amazing Shelves: fiction , arc. Soli Valdez is eighteen and desperate to leave Mexico. So she makes a plan to meet up with her older cousin who lives in Berkeley, California.
If she can just make it across the border, her cousin assures her there will be a job and a place to stay waiting for her.
Soli does make it to California, but not before enduring, well, a lot. Silvia demands Soli abort the baby, but Soli refuses.
Nine months later, her son, Ignacio, is born, and Soli is happy—still existing precariously, but absolutely in love with her son. Thirty-something Kavya Reddy, on the other hand, is not so happy.
Sure, her life is stable and fulfilling in some ways. Even after months of fertility treatments, nothing. Finally, when she can take it no longer, she and her husband, Rishi, decide to pursue adoption.
Kavya and Rishi are ready to begin the process of adopting a baby girl, when Kavya spots toddler Ignacio at the adoption center.
She feels a connection with him immediately and asks about fostering him. As you might imagine, this does not deter Soli from getting her child back one bit.
I loved and hated this book. I felt about it the same way I felt about The Language of Flowers : it is so exquisitely written, but also ruthlessly, unbearably sad.
Honestly, about pages in, when I understood where things were going, I had to put the book down for a couple days. The things Soli goes through… Kavya, too… And poor Ignacio caught in the middle… To be so powerless is an awful thing.
Throughout the book, I felt for both women. Even the ending, though sad, felt whole and satisfying to me. Ultimately, this is a beautiful book—rich and layered and complex.
ARC provided through Amazon Vine. See more of my book reviews at www. For me this book is personal in several ways.
He from Oaxaca city in Mexico and I just visited there 2 years ago. One of my daughters has gone through 3 years of infertility work ups culminating in 4 failed in vitro attempts.
I have been with her through all of the struggles, frustration, heartbreak, etc that goes with infertility. This book is very well researched and well written.
The characters are fully developed and there is much attention to detail. I felt as though I was riding with Soli Castro as she made her very harrowing trip to the United States.
She has the baby, Ignacio, and falls in love with him instantly only to have him taken away when she is sent to a detention center before deportation.
When Soli and her cousin are detained it is through a fluke accident that they are found to be illegal. The other main characters are Kavya and Rishi Reddy, who have spent all of their savings on infertility treatments which have just led to frustration and heartbreak.
They have quite a long time with him in which they are deeply in love with the little boy and have high hopes of adopting him.
They are headed for heartbreak. This novel refers largely to policies which existed in As of this reading, immigration law has largely remained unchanged and more than five million children in the US have at least one undocumented parent.
I felt the characters were very believable and relatable and I think anyone would appreciate this beautifully written book. I think it would be a good choice for a book club with many timely topics to discuss.
Thank you to the author and publisher for an ARC of this book. View 1 comment. Dec 20, Lynne rated it it was amazing. Outstanding writing about the disastrous state of our immigration system as told through the eyes of an immigrant.
This was very thought provoking to me. Considering the title; I'm left wondering is it really so? Jun 30, Gerard Villegas rated it really liked it Shelves: abuse , controversial , medical , political , religious , sexual-assault , tearjerker , death-and-dying , cultural , marriage.
This is one of those books that I couldn't put down. Lucky Boy is family saga involving two different woman of separate socio-economic and cultural backgrounds.
The first is illegal Mexican immigrant Solimar "Soli" Castro who is pregnant and makes a harrowing journey across the California border and into the city of Berkley.
The other is Kavya Reddy of Indian descent who struggles with infertility. Both their paths cross when Soli is jailed for fraud and illegal immigration leading for Kavya and This is one of those books that I couldn't put down.
Both their paths cross when Soli is jailed for fraud and illegal immigration leading for Kavya and her husband Rishi to adopt Soli's son Ignacio "Iggy" which turns into a bitter custody battle between the couple and the mother.
Stedman's The Light Between Oceans, Lucky Boy contains various themes from motherhood, the influences of parenting, culture, xenophobia, socio-economics, and even the hot topic political debate concerning immigration.
Author Shanthi Sekaran does a really good job with presenting two contrasting lives that diametrically opposite of one another. Soli is from an impoverished background and sees coming to America as an escape from her dreary life.
However, her suffrage and the difficult struggles she forced to endure only fuels her bitterness. Still, her son Iggy provides the only good thing in her life despite all the hardships she had to face.
On the other side, Kavya has led more of a charmed life as she is married to a successful husband and a good career.
Despite the pressures faced upon her by her culture and her overbearing mother, she still longs to have a child of her own and adopting Iggy fulfills that dream.
The sacrifices of motherhood is a constant within in the book. First from Soli who suffers during her incarceration but still holds up hope of reuniting with Iggy and second, from Kavya who is wants to be the perfect mother unlike her own.
Each side is flawed and the author does showcase this which becomes a good question to ponder to whom Iggy should rightfully stay with. Even with the realistic ending, there is still that lingering question and truthfully, neither side appears to be in the best interest of the child.
Again, this is a great book to meditate over. I would have rated it five stars but I found that the book could easily be trimmed a bit. Some of the parts concerning Kavya's and Rishi's friends and social circle a bit redundant and really didn't help much in the storytelling.
Certainly, the presentation of Kavya's controlling mother was significant in shaping who she is as a person but again I found myself more fascinated by Soli's story than the couple.
Still, this is a wonderful book to recommend for Book Clubs! Jan 30, Barbara rated it it was amazing Shelves: literature , adult-fiction , domestic-fiction.
In writing this novel, author Shanthi Sekaram was inspired by a news report of an undocumented Guatemalan woman who was attempting to regain custody of her son who was being adopted by his foster parents.
She was interested in the motivations of both parties; she wanted to understand both parties. Sekaram is a first generation American whose parents were fortunate to find a workable way to live legally in the USA.
The plight of undocumented immigrants are an interest to her; she sees her life as In writing this novel, author Shanthi Sekaram was inspired by a news report of an undocumented Guatemalan woman who was attempting to regain custody of her son who was being adopted by his foster parents.
The plight of undocumented immigrants are an interest to her; she sees her life as lucky in that her parents possessed skills and were from a country that the USA prefer.
The politics of undocumented immigrants are an important issue to her. In this story, a young Mexican girl, Soli, goes through horrendous conditions to get illegally into the United States.
Her destination is Berkley, CA because she has a cousin who is documented and successfully living there. The reader learns of the sad health resources that are available to immigrants.
Soon after her baby boy is a year old, Soli unwittingly gets involved in a traffic incident that exposes her to the authorities.
Her son is taken away from her, placed in social services, as she is remanded to immigrant detention. Kavya and Rishi are first generation Americans whose parents emigrated from India.
After undergoing heart wrenching fertility issues, they decide to adopt a child. They decide to go through the foster care system, and become foster parents interested in adopting.
They fall immediately in love with the boy. Sekaran does a fabulous job creating endearing characters. Sekaran also illuminates the horrors that many undocumented immigrants go through to get to the USA.
She shows how these people just want to work and live their lives in peace. She also studied the laws that govern these children of undocumented workers.
In general, the judge that resides the case generally determines the rights of the undocumented. I highly recommend this timely novel as one that exemplifies immigrations issues, especially for those immigrants who want to be part of the country, and the difficulties posed to them to be documented.
This would be a fabulous book club read. Shelves: setting-usa , adult-fiction , politics-society-and-religion , settingst-cent , asian-and-aa-authors , race-class-and-gender , immigrants-migrants-and-refugees , favorites , prose-before-bros , indie-next.
Ughhhh book hangover. I read more than pages yesterday. Then I frantically tried to finish on the train this morning but had to slow down to savor the last few pages because I realized I didn't want it to end.
This is one of my new go-to reading recommendations. This beautiful no Ughhhh book hangover. This beautiful novel follows two parallel stories in nearby Berkeley: one of an undocumented Mexican immigrant and the other of a middle-class Indian couple struggling with infertility.
This book is especially relevant given the conversations around immigration in today's America, but I would recommend it anyway based on the engaging storytelling, vibrant setting and well-developed characters.
You might have an opinion about who is wrong and who is right, but as the publisher declares, 'There are no bad guys in this story. Jan 08, Kathleen rated it really liked it.
If John Gardner is to be believed, then there are only two plots in all of literature: "A person goes on a journey" and "A stranger comes to town.
One of the novel's paired protagonists, year-old Solimar Castro-Valdez, or Soli, bravely sets off on the fraught journey to cross the border from Mexico to the United States, only to If John Gardner is to be believed, then there are only two plots in all of literature: "A person goes on a journey" and "A stranger comes to town.
One of the novel's paired protagonists, year-old Solimar Castro-Valdez, or Soli, bravely sets off on the fraught journey to cross the border from Mexico to the United States, only to arrive without legal permission and unexpectedly pregnant.
Her parents pay a smuggler to help her leave her tiny, forlorn village, Santa Clara Popocalco, because it "offered no work, only the growing and eating of a few stalks of corn," and because she "wanted California, and she wanted it badly enough that anyone who threatened to take it away … would have to be ignored.
The daughter of Indian immigrants, she feels such intense cultural and personal pressure to reproduce that sometimes, amid her struggles with fertility, "She vaguely and irrationally worried that the infant supply would be tapped out by other lucky women — that in the great heavenly handout, no babies would be left for her.
To call him lucky is not an ironic gesture on Sekaran's part, but it's also not an uncomplicated one. Much of the book's conflict hinges on how fortunate he is to be loved fiercely by two women — his mother, from whom he is taken when she winds up in an immigration detention center after a traffic stop, and Kavya, who fosters him, intending to adopt him and make him her own.
Sekaran's handling of this situation, though humanistic and ultimately uplifting, does not oversimplify or sugarcoat the wrenching difficulty of such a situation.
Soli becomes "Alien " in the detention camp, where "Prisoners slept head to toe, and at night, they shivered. Because of the way Sekaran examines the vagaries of economic inequality and the messiness of love in addition to the intricacies of immigration and adoption, "Lucky Boy" would make a promising pick for a book club.
The circumstances feel well-researched, but Sekaran never lets that research get in the way of what is, at its core, a gripping story.
The sentences themselves are beautiful too, as when she writes: "Why did people love children that were born to other people?
Sekaran offers her audience the opportunity to consider chance itself — the accidents of circumstance we don't want to acknowledge as defining our fates, preferring instead to insist we are the ones in control.
Jun 18, BookNightOwl rated it it was amazing. Lucky Boy is about 2 women. One who escapes Mexico into the United States and try to make a life in California as an illegal.
Then the other who desperately wants a baby but having a hard time conceiving. I listened to the audiobook of this as well as have a hard copy and I enjoyed this so much.
The narrator did a fantastic job with the story. A must read!!! Jun 04, Erin Glover rated it really liked it Shelves: four-stars.
As they struggle with their limited choices, they compare themselves to another Indian couple, Preeti Patel and Vikram Sen who also live in Berkeley, California.
Preeti was always a little better than Kavya, especially when she gets pregnant. Sen started his own company and made a fortune.
But Kavya learns Preeti is not who she thought she was. She does not have it all. They wonder if love can change what they know to be morally correct.
This is the central issue of the novel. In a parallel world, an 18 year old Mexican emigrant named Soli hops the deadly train nicknamed La Bestia continuing her journey to the US.
Hopping this train is considered too dangerous for women, but she demonstrated her courageousness on an earlier leg of the journey so the young men allow her to accompany them.
Not all of them make it. She manages to land a good job with a nice family, this connection becoming critical to her survival. Her life is going well though she hopes for more.
Then, a single error leads to denial of her most fundamental human rights by the US government. By coincidence, her path crosses with those of Kavya and Rishi.
The trajectory of their lives forces each of them to question their core beliefs. The story is engrossing. I kept turning the pages because there was plenty of tension.
I read all pages in two days. A serious stage coach accident occurred near Lucky Boy in , when "six spirited horses took fright" and then "dragged the passengers down a steep grade at lightning speed".
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Ghost town in Nevada, United States. Lucky Boy. Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey.
Reno Evening Gazette. April 29, Retrieved April 30, Reno: University of Nevada Press. Filming started on October 5, , and lasted for 25 days.
Most of the scenes were shot in Singapore, with some done in Malaysia. Boon Chan of The Straits Times rated the film a 2 out of 5 stars, commenting that the "will-they-or-won't-they premise of Lin Yu's pursuit for Qing Qing drags out for far too long".
Meanwhile, there could be a "much-needed trim, especially the jarring jump from light-hearted comedy romance to melodrama", and "the attempt to add some heft by incorporating real-life events from the Hotel New World collapse in to the Sars outbreak in does not really work".
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Theatrical release poster. Retrieved 9 May The New Paper. Singapore Press Holdings. Retrieved 2 April