Restrepo, Laura

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The Divine Boys

Although Restrepo (Delirium) gives this award-winning novel an effective structure and flowing text, the despicable characters and violent crime are major turnoffs. Heinous though the murder is, the author elicits little pity for the victim and offers no apology or explanation on the perpetrator’s behalf. Appealing to those readers for whom sensationalism and contemptible characters are standard entertainment.

No Place for Heroes

Despite the potentially compelling situations, the novel fails to convey any sense of danger or immediacy. The conversation between mother and son is stilted, used mostly as a forced means to develop the plot. The author misses the opportunity to expose the nasty politics of the military junta; its heinous deeds are mentioned but never witnessed, which seems odd in light of the author's strong political commitment and experience in that arena. Not the best example of this popular author's work.

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