By: Doragnes Bradshaw, PRSA Orlando – DEI Chair
Olga Dies Dreaming, by Xochitl Gonzalez
About the book:
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK · WINNER OF THE BROOKLYN PUBLIC LIBRARY PRIZE • INTERNATIONAL LATINO BOOK AWARD FINALIST
A blazing talent debuts with the tale of a status-driven wedding planner grappling with her social ambitions, absent mother, and Puerto Rican roots—all in the wake of Hurricane Maria
NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR: Kirkus, Washington Post, TIME, NPR, Vogue, Esquire, Book Riot, Goodreads, EW, Reader’s Digest, and more!
“Don’t underestimate this new novelist. She’s jump-starting the year with a smart romantic comedy that lures us in with laughter and keeps us hooked with a fantastically engaging story.” —The Washington Post
It’s 2017, and Olga and her brother, Pedro “Prieto” Acevedo, are boldfaced names in their hometown of New York. Prieto is a popular congressman representing their gentrifying Latinx neighborhood in Brooklyn, while Olga is the tony wedding planner for Manhattan’s power brokers.
Despite their alluring public lives, behind closed doors things are far less rosy. Sure, Olga can orchestrate the love stories of the 1 percent but she can’t seem to find her own. . . until she meets Matteo, who forces her to confront the effects of long-held family secrets.
Olga and Prieto’s mother, Blanca, a Young Lord turned radical, abandoned her children to advance a militant political cause, leaving them to be raised by their grandmother. Now, with the winds of hurricane season, Blanca has come barreling back into their lives.
Set against the backdrop of New York City in the months surrounding the most devastating hurricane in Puerto Rico’s history, Xochitl Gonzalez’s Olga Dies Dreaming is a story that examines political corruption, familial strife, and the very notion of the American dream—all while asking what it really means to weather a storm.
Source: Macmillan Publisher
About the author:
Xochitl Gonzalez is the New York Times bestselling author of Olga Dies Dreaming. Named a Best of 2022 by The New York Times, TIME, Kirkus, Washington Post, and NPR, Olga Dies Dreaming was the winner of the Brooklyn Public Library Book Prize in Fiction and the New York City Book Award. Gonzalez is a 2021 MFA graduate from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Her nonfiction work has been published in Elle Decor, Allure, Vogue, Real Simple, and The Cut. Her commentary writing for The Atlantic was recognized as a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. A native Brooklynite and proud public school graduate, Gonzalez holds a BA from Brown University and lives in her hometown of Brooklyn with her dog, Hectah Lavoe.
Resources and reviews on Olga Dies Dreaming:
- New York Times – October 2022
- Podcasts with PRSA Orlando members Jen Atwell and Doragnes Rivera Bradshaw
Orlando Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month Resources: