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This Highly-Anticipated Novel features a Beautiful Love Story

Olga Dies Dreaming by Xochitl Gonzalez
Reading Time: 2 minutes

First, a confession: Olga Dies Dreaming is not a book you will find shelved in the romance section. There is a romantic storyline, but the official rule of engagement of the romance genre is that the love story propels the novel.

I believe romance readers to be voracious and curious, willing to read outside the strict confines of the genre if the novel is good, and Olga Dies Dreaming is marvelous.

At the center of the story is Olga, a wedding planner for the 1%, and the daughter of freedom fighters. At a young age, Olga and her brother Prieto lost their parents, their mother to the cause of liberating Puerto Rico, their father to drugs. Even in her absence, their mother commands the stage, sending them messages questioning their choices and beliefs. Puerto Rico looms large for Olga and Pietro, their place in its culture, their obligation to it.

Nestled in this sweeping novel is a beautiful love story between Olga and Matteo, a man she meets at a bar when she’s there drinking off a bad day. During their second meeting, Matteo shares the story of losing his mother to ovarian cancer and how it changed his life.  

“Olga was touched. And enchanted. As a kid, she’d been embarrassed by the complexity of her family story. The nuance required to understand it escaped most people. By the time she hit high school, she felt exhausted from explaining it and simply resigned herself to not revisiting the past with strangers. But Matteo’s life tractory, and his openness about it, made her feel a glimmer of possibility that this time she might be understood.”

Is there anything more romantic than being well and truly understood?

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