This months bookclub we read the Milagro Beanfield War by John Nichols. This novel falls into the magical realism genre and is the first book in a series of 3. Everyone in our group liked this book. Some more so than others. I personally fell in the median of the group, I enjoyed the plot of the book, and at first the characters. I will say about half way through the book the authors several page long back story on minor characters that we would never hear from again, became quite cumbersome and for me really detracted from the book. I totally understood that the author was trying to create this very detailed picture of life in a small New Mexico town, but I just felt like it detracted from the story, instead of add to it. The writing style was excellent and reminded me a lot of Gabriel García Márquez, but unfortunately there was no family tree. Honestly in retrospect a family tree might have helped me a lot with my understanding of this book.
If you enjoy the works of Gabriel García Márquez you would probably really enjoy this book. I would also definitely recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of the magical realism genre. I felt like there was definitely more magical realism sprinkled throughout the whole story that I really loved. The main characters were vibrant and rich and I love all their backstories. Everyone had a certain story and mythos about their family that you really only get when you grown up in a very small town or neighborhood.
Rachel at By The Pounds hosted our book club and of course made a delicious dinner for us. She made pork carnitas that were OMG good. She also made homemade Soapapillas that were better than the ones that were made at the Mexican restaurant I used to work at. Seriously delicious. She also made Horchata for us to drink. This was my first time having Horchata and I was immensely delighted. It’s a rice based drink with cinnamon and Rum. You can find Rachel’s recipe here.
Have any of you read this book before? Let me know what you thought in the comments. Our next book is The Luckiest Girl alive by Jessica Knoll if you want to follow along. You can also find all of the books we have ever read on Pinterest .