When a school presentation goes very wrong, Alaine Beauparlant finds herself suspended and shipped off to her parents' native country of Haiti, where she spends time with her mother and aunt and learns some surprising things about her family history.
Dear Haiti, Love Alaine is a dense and beautiful tapestry of heavy issues, with even more heavy issues woven in throughout ... The book becomes an immersive experience for the reader too, as we become just as wrapped up in the rhythm and magic of the country as Alaine ... I'm not sure I was ready to dive into such a hard-hitting novel, but I'm very glad I did. Alaine's adventures in Haiti were so intense and engaging, I could almost feel the dirt beneath my fingernails, could almost smell the peanuts and plantains. But I think my favorite part was ultimately the female empowerment that permeated every part of this tale, past and present ... Maika and Maritza Moulite have created quite the masterpiece here.
This book was a true delight to read, and one of my favorite books that dealt into cultural family relationships. I honestly felt that this book was transcultural, because I could see a lot of my own family dynamics playing out, showing that sometimes, families aren’t all that different after all. Also, if you’re a big fan of mother-daughter relationship arcs, then you’re definitely in for a touching, if albeit heart-rending story ... please read this book. It’s so heartwarming, and touches on some serious parental relationship themes. The story is fun and carefree and also very serious at the same time. I felt that despite some of the delicate topics, they were handled with grace and careful hands that shaped this novel into something truly wonderful to behold.
The sisters Moulite have realistically created in Alaine an energetic, smart first-generation teen in a quest to understand herself via family ... A strong offering mixing a romance, mystery, and adventure in a Caribbean travelogue.