Review Detail

Young Adult Fiction 374
Thirty Talks Weird Love
(Updated: March 08, 2021)
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Thirteen-year-old Anamaria has an encounter from Thirty, a strange woman who insists she's from the future. Anamaria lives in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, well-known for its many lost girls. She's been taught not to talk to strangers, even one that claims she's her future self. Anamaria attends Sor, a private school, and pushes herself to be number one in academics. She also worries about the missing girls and other things like if she'll ever be good enough.

What worked: I loved this free-verse novel that shows Mexican Anamaria and the struggles she goes through. She's an overachiever at her private school. Anamaria stresses whenever she hears the whispers from her parents and other adults on the missing girls in her town. She also worries that her grades might alienate her from her friends. Plus, there's Alexa, the rich girl who has her own different types of struggles. The interactions with the girls at her private school are very realistic. So are the trials of Anamaria.

What I really loved about this novel is it explores body image and also depression. At first I thought Thirty came back to help Anamaria not become one of the 'missing'. No there is much more to the story. Thirty prods Anamaria to return to her creative side. Hence the free verse throughout this novel. The ending though digs deep into the guilt Anamaria carries when one horrific thing does happen to someone close to her.

The free verse includes black out poetry which is popular with this audience. Anamaria's words are strong and powerful on learning to love yourself. Plus, the plight of the many missing young girls in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico is addressed.

Powerful free verse novel of a young Mexican girl who learns from her future self that there is more to life than being first on a honor roll list. Addresses subjects such as depression, body awareness, friendship, and guilt in such a way that is sure to resonate with readers.
Good Points
1. Addresses body image, bullying, depression, overachieving
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