“There is an allure to the night. I used to be captivated by it. Seduced. In the glare of the sun, it’s hard to hide who you really are, don’t you think?”
Dealing In Dreams by Lilliam Rivera
Chief Rocka and her crew, Las Mal Criadas, are the top dogs in Mega City. Their leader, Déesse, wants the girls to prove their loyalty to her one last time before she’ll allow them to live in the Towers, a place of luxury reserved for the Mega City elite. As the LMCs set out on their journey to infiltrate a mysterious rebel group that exists outside the borders of Mega City, Chief Rocka is forced to come to terms with what’s really going on in her “utopia” hometown, and if Déesse really knows best.
The world of Dealing in Dreams is powerful and all too possible. A TERF (trans-exclusionary radical feminist)-style matriarchy that keeps the opposition silent with drugs and violence is the most likely scenario if Earth isn’t destroyed by global warming or neo-Nazis. This book illustrated the fact that there are many kinds of feminism that don’t all fit under one nice label, and some can be much more damaging than others. (Also, the sueño tabs that kept everyone drugged up bored a striking resemblance to soma from Brave New World. And if you know what I’m talking about, you’re such a freaking nerd.)
I wasn’t a fan of Lilliam Rivera’s writing style in The Education of Margo Sanchez, and while she’s improved a lot in Dealing in Dreams, there was still something about it that felt slightly juvenile. Her descriptions aren’t as powerful as they could be, as I found myself never really knowing what her characters looked like.
Dealing in Dreams’ characters sadly took a backseat to the plot for me, but I still really enjoyed watching Chief Rocka and Truck’s rollercoaster bromance (sismance?) evolve from literally the first page to the last. They were the two most developed characters, their personalities realistic and relatable.
Dealing in Dreams was enjoyable from beginning to end, making challenging points about feminism and the “ideal” society. Las Mal Criadas were an electric group of characters, every one of them unique and raw. While the plot may have been slightly predictable, the ending was not, and it kept the book realistic and emotional. Lilliam Rivera is exponentially improving with every book she writes, and I truly cannot wait to see what she creates next.
Review by: Ivy
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