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Natalie and Consuelo are like-minded individuals who live in Lava Landing, CA. When they aren’t working at The Big Cheese Plant, they get all dolled up for the racetrack, or go for at a tequila float at The Big Five Four. They urgently need to get Consuelo’s father out of Purgatory: he won’t stop turning up in women’s dreams until they do. But that means a trip to Mexico, and Consuelo still hasn’t gotten over her fear of long car rides . . . .
Inspired by La Lotería, a Mexican game of chance not unlike bingo, the novel is a joyous story of mamacitas and mariachis, fiestas and tupperware parties, rodeos and Miss Magma beauty contests. In ¡Caramba! the American experience emerges in a brilliant new language and landscape, both touching and dazzlingly fresh.
“Endlessly inventive . . . very funny. Martinez’s deadpan perspective on faith, romance and the uneasy bonds of family is truly wonderful.” —The Washington Post Book World
“An absurdly entertaining first novel . . . . With a born-again mariachi and his witchcraft practicing mother, a vixen recently jailed for her involvement in moving tamales stuffed with mala hierba, a beautician who’s part mamacita, part papacito, and a volcano that could blow at any moment, Caramba! is a dizzying Mexican hat dance . . . . ” —Los Angeles Times
“A triumph of whimsy and imagination—Monty Python meets 100 Years of Solitude” —San Francisco Chronicle