Gabi, a Girl in Pieces, by Isabel Quintero (book review) – senior year, too many surprises

book cover of Gabi a Girl in Pieces by Isabel Quintero published by Cinco Puntos PressBe a “good girl” until married? (unlike her own mom)
Go to college? (unlike her immigrant parents)
Do anything to be popular? (unlike…hmmm)

Gabi feels pulled apart by all the different demands of her mom, her teachers, her very-Mexican friends, her be-more-white schoolmates, society’s get-skinny-now-fat-girl messages – what’s going to come out on top during her senior year?

Now out in paperback, find Gabi and her outspoken journal at your local library or independent bookstore.

How do you stay strong against societal pressure?

Book info: Gabi, a Girl in Pieces / Isabel Quintero. Cinco Puntos Books, 2015. [author site]  [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher, via Edelweiss.

My book talk: Conflicting messages from family, friends, and society leave Gabi wondering if she can truly achieve her dreams or if she must conform to the expectations of her Mexican heritage in Southern California.

As her senior year begins, Gabi still wants to lose weight, have a normal family, and have a boyfriend (and a first kiss!). Instead, she copes with her best friend’s unintended pregnancy, her meth-head father’s random appearances, and the fallout of her other best friend finally coming out to his very traditional Mexican family.

Creative writing class becomes an unexpected source of joy in her life, a distraction from the escapades of her younger brother (always overlooked by their mom, who is so critical of Gabi) and the overlong visit of her busybody aunt.

A first kiss – hooray! Macho heartbreaker – boo!
Supporting Cindy through morning sickness – not fun. Working with Martin on poetry – much better!
All the drama with mom and dad – so bad. A chance to attend prom with a real boyfriend – excellent!

Will Gabi be able to escape her mother’s unending lectures on staying ‘a good girl’ and go to college away from this stuffy town? Read her honest journal to find out. (One of 6,000 books recommended on

One thought on “Gabi, a Girl in Pieces, by Isabel Quintero (book review) – senior year, too many surprises

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