Book Review | Waking Up in the Land of Glitter by Kathy Cano-Murillo
Title: Waking Up in the Land of Glitter: A Crafty Chica Novel
Author: Kathy Cano-Murillo
Format: TRADE PAPERBACK
Publish Date: 3/1/2010
I’m not a “girly-girl” but the idea of reading a book that suggests there will be a GLITTER involved sounded really cute and inviting to me! Waking Up in the Land of Glitter, by Kathy Cano-Murillo, starts with the story of an art display that has been defaced and introduces the main characters of the novel quickly. I must admit, that the beginning, I felt like I was thrown into the middle of the book and found myself trying to get my bearings. Within the first chapter, however, I understood how the characters were connected and I felt much more comfortable with the plot of the novel.
The main characters are interesting and quirky – Star, who has ambition but absolutely no idea how or where to channel it, appears at the beginning of the novel as she tries to explain how a mural in front of her parent’s business (designed by her “friend” Theo) has been vandalized. Star has to think on her feet because she knows that she defaced in the mural in a drunken panic the night before, afraid that Theo was going to try and take their relationship to a different level and ask Star to marry him. Star has difficulty with the interview as she hates the female tv personality, known as “Crafty Chloe”, who covers the art scene and has a nasty disposition. Theo later tells Star they can’t be together in any way because he knows what she has done. Star then bears her soul to her best friend Ofie and has to face her parents, who tell her she has to complete a number of tasks to make amends for the things she has done.
Before everything has begun to unravel, Star commits to producing hundreds of centerpieces for the Craft Olympics – despite the fact she’s made in the commitment in the name of her parent’s business (without their consent) and despite the fact that Star actually hates crafts! When told by her parents that she must sort out this problem, Star sets out to achieve this goal. Along the way she manages to gather together her friend Ofie (who loves crafts but is horrible at their execution), Ofie’s mother-in-law (who seems to stay around to pass judgement, rather than providing support), a teen boy who is a talented designer (but whose parents don’t even realize he enjoys crafts and thinks he is attending school events) and the nasty Chloe. Chloe has her own secrets – despite being known as “Crafty Chloe”, her crafting skills and interest are actually a scam to land herself a better job in television!
This motley crew faces highs and lows in their work to deal with their problems and secrets while also trying to complete the centerpieces for the Craft Olympics!
Throughout the novel, I found myself becoming more and more engaged in their lives and their stories. Though the characters were all quirky in different ways, I could envision them as they went about trying to achieve their goals and deal with their problems. I wanted Ofie to feel more confident about herself, for Star to find her passion and for Chloe (once I stopped despising her) to find a way to be happy with her life.
I don’t want to say too much about the plot because I was surprised at how everything worked itself out as the novel ended. I felt a sense of pleasure knowing how things ended and felt a sense of completion as I finished the novel. I hate how sometimes a book will leave me with a sense that some element of the story or characters were never addressed, but that was not the case with Waking Up in the Land of Glitter.
While I still have no desire to take on crocheting or purse-making or anything even remotely connected to glitter, I loved the passion that the characters had in the story for their creative process. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who does enjoy crafts or, realistically, anyone who loves a great novel about friendship, love and relationships!
*I received no monetary compensation for this review. I received a free copy of the book to read and provide an honest review of its contents. The opinions are entirely my own and may not reflect your own opinion upon reading the book.*