Patron Saints of Nothing

Featured
 
4.7
 
4.3 (1)
736 0
Patron Saints of Nothing
Author(s)
Publisher
Age Range
14+
Release Date
June 18, 2019
ISBN
0525554912
Buy This Book
      
A powerful coming-of-age story about grief, guilt, and the risks a Filipino-American teenager takes to uncover the truth about his cousin's murder.

Jay Reguero plans to spend the last semester of his senior year playing video games before heading to the University of Michigan in the fall. But when he discovers that his Filipino cousin Jun was murdered as part of President Duterte's war on drugs, and no one in the family wants to talk about what happened, Jay travels to the Philippines to find out the real story.

Hoping to uncover more about Jun and the events that led to his death, Jay is forced to reckon with the many sides of his cousin before he can face the whole horrible truth -- and the part he played in it.

As gripping as it is lyrical, Patron Saints of Nothing is a page-turning portrayal of the struggle to reconcile faith, family, and immigrant identity.

Editor reviews

1 reviews

It’s a thought-provoking masterpiece that blurs the line between fiction and reality
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Reading Patron Saints of Nothing invokes a lot of emotions, especially for someone who’s socially aware of the current political situation in the Philippines. There is pain and grief in Jay’s loss of his cousin, Jun; anger from the fact that this Drug War is explicitly anti-poor and that some privileged Filipinos choose to stay with their apathy because this doesn’t affect them; and shame and disbelief from the fact that a lot of Filipinos support this constant violation of human rights.

I was able to read a manuscript of this book since Randy reached out and asked if I could be one of the sensitivity readers for Jay’s story. Even from then, I love the fact that he was able to capture the reality and elicit empathy with the book’s premise.

Of course, I was a little worried since the main character is a Filipino-American who has little knowledge of the Philippines besides their occasional visits. I was worried with how Jay would digest the reality of the problem we have, but the author addressed it in such a way that it was a learning experience for Jay. No white savior nonsense and the likes, Jay was actually willing to learn and even gets called out a couple of times. His character growth and realizations about the truth and his journey towards finding himself was a delight to see as we go along the story.

Another notable thing was how genuine the characters’ voices are. Realistic portrayals are important especially when it comes to stories that take on cultural representation. I’m really just grateful that Randy Ribay was able to show accurate Filipino representation from different aspects in the book such as politics, religion, family relationships, and even food!

However, I wanted to talk about how adults were presented in the story. It’s a classic case of “the adults are useless so the youngins better do something about it”, and I kid you not, this is the reality of the Philippine Society. We’re taught to respect our elders. We’re allowed to have an opinion but we’re not allowed to call them out when they’re wrong.

The funny thing is all these were personified in Tito Maning’s character so my hatred was just focused on one person. If you’re not from the Philippines, has read this book and you found yourself hating on Tito Maning, I just want you to know that most people have the same mindset as him. It’s pretty much infuriating.

Overall, my reading experience with Patron Saints of Nothing was purely positive. It brought a fresh perspective to a highly sensitive topic in the Philippines. It’s a thought-provoking masterpiece that blurs the line between fiction and reality and forces you to question where you stand. Besides politics, it also tackles socioeconomic inequalities, racism, and sexism. God, I’ll never shut up about this book’s importance because it’s truly an eye-opener. All the more reasons to pick this book up if you’re having second thoughts. Trust me, it’s worth your time.
Good Points
realistic and genuine voice, accurate portrayal of Filipino characters, thought provoking and eye-opening
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0

User reviews

1 reviews

Overall rating 
 
4.3
Plot 
 
5.0  (1)
Characters 
 
4.0  (1)
Writing Style 
 
4.0  (1)
Already have an account? or Create an account
Loved It!
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
After learning that his cousin Jun (his best friend and penpal) has died, Jay Reguero heads back to visit his extended family in the Philippines to find out more about his cousin’s life and what happened to cause his death. This book is amazing. I didn’t really know much about it when I started reading it, it was kind of a spur of the moment pick. However, I’m so glad I did! This book is not afraid to address some very serious and difficult subjects and was able to handle it well. I also loved hearing more about Filipino culture with Jay as he learns and reconnects with his family and Filipino culture. I wasn’t overly fond of the romance, but it wasn’t that big of a deal, and ultimately didn’t affect my enjoyment of this book.
Thanks to Bookishfirst for providing me with a copy to review!
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Never-DEAD
 
0.0
 
5.0 (1)
A world-changing disease springs up in Chiapas, Mexico around the...
Between Burning Worlds
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
Les Misérables meets The Lunar Chronicles in the out-of-this-world sequel...
Gotham High
 
4.0 (2)
 
0.0 (0)
From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Alex...
The Court of Miracles (Court of Miracles, #1)
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Les Misérables meets Six of Crows in this page-turning adventure...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
In the land of Barracks, the economy thrives on the...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
very year, each of the humanoid planets in the United...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Every year, each of the humanoid planets in the United...
Dragon Rising: A Mulan Inspired Fantasy
 
4.9 (3)
 
0.0 (0)
Sometimes a battle isn't waged on a bloody field....
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Savannah, Georgia is one of the most haunted places in...
Sword in the Stars (Once & Future, #2)
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
In this epic sequel to Once & Future, to...
Perfectly Misunderstood
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Jayden Valdez is an overachieving intellectual. Mike McGinnes is...
Crave
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
My whole world changed when I stepped inside the...
Golden Arm
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Lazarus “Laz” Weathers has always been shy, and his...
Meet Me at Midnight
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
They have a love-hate relationship with summer. Sidney and...
In My Heart
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A working mother reassures her child that even when they’re...
Grandpa's Stories
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
One young girl reflects on a year with her beloved...

Latest Member Reviews

In My Heart
 
5.0
"IN MY HEART is a beautiful board book that celebrates the love between mother and child. Delving into the ways..."
Grandpa's Stories
 
4.5
"Both heart-wrenching and soul-soothing, this vibrantly illustrated story is a sort of basic introduction to the concept and impact of..."
I Love You, Daddy (Peter Rabbit)
 
4.0
"I LOVE YOU, DADDY is a sweet book for fathers to share with their young readers. Featuring springy pastels, Peter..."
I, Cosmo
 
4.0
"Cosmo is the "big brother" of Max and his young sister Emmaline, and is now 13 years old. He still..."
Charlie Thorne and the Last Equation (Charlie Thorne #1)
 
5.0
"Charlie is a twelve year old intellectual prodigy who has uncaring, manipulative parents whom she has escaped by enrolling in..."
Otter: What Pet Is Best?
 
5.0
"'Otter: What Pet Is Best?' by Sam Garton introduces Otter to a variety of pets that he might want, but..."
I Want to Be a Pilot
 
5.0
"'I Want to Be a Pilot' by Laura Driscoll, pictures by Catalina Echeverri, takes readers on a journey through an..."
All Aboard! The Airport Train
 
4.5
"'All Aboard! The Airport Train' by Nichole Mara, illustrated by Andrew Kolb, is a neat, lift-the-flap book that turns into..."
Diggersaurs Explore (Diggersaurs)
 
5.0
"DIGGERSAURS EXPLORE is a delightful sequel to the book taking the toddler world by storm! Whether you have a little..."
Diggersaurs
 
5.0
"DIGGERSAURS is perfect for children who love dinosaurs, construction vehicles, bright colors, and/or fun, rhyming phrases. This book re-imagines construction..."
I Love You, Little One
 
5.0
"I LOVE YOU, LITTLE ONE is an elegant and lovely book that speaks to parental love. Perfect for bedtime, this..."
Fun on the Farm
 
5.0
"FUN ON THE FARM is an adorably ridiculous read. The book uses rhyming phrases to anthropomorphize farm animals in the..."
The Happy, Snappy Crab
 
5.0
"THE HAPPY, SNAPPY CRAB is a charming adventure through the sea. The board book features pop-up sea animals on every..."
Snuggle Tight, Kiss Goodnight
 
4.5
"SNUGGLE TIGHT, KISS GOODNIGHT is a lovely bedtime pop-up board book. The book features rhyming phrases related to bedtime and..."
When the Babies Came to Stay
 
5.0
"WHEN THE BABIES CAME TO STAY is a lovely story about non-traditional families, unconditional love, and community. Four babies arrive..."
The Triumphant Tale of Pippa North
 
4.0
"In Wanderly, everyone has a role. Some are Triumphants, the greatest of heroes, some are Tragicals, orphans doomed to a..."
TBH, This is SO Awkward
 
4.0
"'TBH, This is SO Awkward: A Novel in Text' by Lisa Greenwald is quite interesting in that it is written..."
Look Both Ways
 
5.0
"I often hear it said that writers are bred, and sure you can breed some decent writers with whatever amount..."
Mr Penguin and the Fortress of Secrets (Mr Penguin #2)
 
4.5
"Mr. Penguins and his friends Colin the spider and Edith are trying to keep a rock safe from dastardly types..."
Pop-Up Peekaboo! Baby Animals
 
5.0
"POP-UP PEEKABOO! BABY ANIMALS is a charming lift-the-flap and pop-up picture book. Each spread features a parent animal who is..."