Have just finished reading A Painted Lily by Angela Hoke and it was fabulous! It was an incredible story about the importance of cultural identity to one's sense of self. Without knowing our cultural history it can be difficult to understand who we are and how we fit in this beautifully diverse world. This story unpacks how family secrets and dishonesty can lead to feelings of doubt in ourselves. It also beautifully illustrates the journey of self discovery we sometimes need to take to accept who we are. And it's not always where we came from that makes us who we are; it's the people who support us and love us unconditionally; no matter what that shape who we become. The story is a beautiful depiction of Cuba and the authenticity of the people is a testament to the writing. I genuinely felt transported to the colourful Cuban streets and was invested in the journey. I felt for the characters with every dead end they came across when searching for the truth. To uncovering the difficulties of Cuban life and the heart-wrenching decision to leave everything you know and love behind to find "a better life" when the life you have threatens your family. It is a beautiful story of family, culture and doing what you think is best to protect the people you care about and finding love for yourself and those who love you through thick and thin. I look forward to reading books written by Angela Hoke in the future and would recommend this book for anyone searching for themselves.
This book was received complimentary from the author through Voracious Readers Only.