Los secretos de La Torre

Editorial Destellos. Dec. 2021. 268p. pap. $14. ISBN 9781732073197.
Gr 6-10–Adrián, Luna, Alberto and Camila become embroiled in a mystery plot during a visit to the University of Puerto Rico. The young people live in Barrio Buen Consejo, and during their visit to the university, they encounter El Velorio, which Francisco Oller painted with upside-down images. The story has elements of fantasy and magical realism that come together with a narrative about the realities of life on the island and at the University of Puerto Rico. In this immersive adventure, the group of friends get swept into a parallel world. The novel is influenced by the Puerto Rican Baquiné tradition, a part religious, part festive event that marks the death of an innocent child as a joyful event rather than one to mourn, as the child will now become an angel in heaven. Marrero also works in discussions of the politics and difficult realities that play an important role on the island. The teens not only uncover the mystery of the painting but also discover themselves in this magnetic book.
VERDICT An unforgettable, mystical novel for all shelves.

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