Review: Furia by Yamile Saied Mendez
'“The sense of wonder and possibility - that I owed to the Argentine women who had fought for freedom before the universe conspired and the stars aligned to make me"
Author: Yamile Saied Mendez
Genre: Young Adult, Sports Romance, Contemporary
This book surprised me in the best way possible, It was wonderfully built from start to finish. Furia, tells a unique and diverse story about Camila, a soccer fanatic with a deeply patriarchal family. From her father's eyes her goal is to educate herself to be able to marry herself off. However, that is not at all what Camila wants. Hence, she lies to her parents about her whereabouts and never tells them her enjoyment or skill for the sport.
Furia dealt with a lot of important topics. One of Furia's main issues is the fact that in Argentina many girls are disappearing or dying, however these girls are hated throughout the country because of being "feminists". Her own family disgraces these girls, where the main issue is that these girls are being murdered. Another big factor or theme that I enjoyed was the family relationship or bonds that developed between Camila's family. She does not trust her parents, because her mother is too naive and scared to leave her father even though he's a cheat and aggressive. Camila's brother is also a soccer star, who doesn't seem to be reaching the goals he desires. Hence there is this constant battle with him and his father about his wasted potential. Lastly, there is a very good representation and growth within Camila and her mom' s relationship as she lies and tries to understand her mother's undying love for her terrible abusive father.
Furia also deals with romance in the most delicate and wonderful way. Camila's love interest is Diego, her brother's best friend who was signed with Juventus and has become of the most popular players. Diego is visiting the town he was born in and pays Camila and her brother a visit. During this time they rekindle the love and passion they felt for each other, however Camila has a hard time separating Diego's fame with her own possibilities and future. When Diego desires her to ship herself off to live with him, she knows she needs to follow her dreams first.
The story is overall very Feminist, and it discusses women empowerment. It showcases weak and strong women, and the effect man can overall have on culture and therefore affect both male and female behaviors. I really enjoyed seeing myself (as I am Venezuelan) reflected in the main character. The descriptions and Hispanic references really made the story feel more wholesome and complete.
"I’d leave this house the first chance I got, but not by chasing after a boy, including my brother. I’d do it on my own terms, following my dreams, not someone else’s.”
-- 5 stars --