How Not to Drown in a Glass of Water by Angie Cruz
“She knew I had to cry until I undrown from the inside.”
― Angie Cruz, How Not to Drown in a Glass of Water
Cara Romero thought she would work at the factory of little lamps for the rest of her life. But when, in her mid-50s, she loses her job in the Great Recession, she is forced back into the job market for the first time in decades. Set up with a job counselor, Cara instead begins to narrate the story of her life. Over the course of twelve sessions, Cara recounts her tempestuous love affairs, her alternately biting and loving relationships with her neighbor Lulu and her sister Angela, her struggles with debt, gentrification, and loss, and, eventually, what really happened between her and her estranged son, Fernando. As Cara confronts her darkest secrets and regrets, we see a woman buffeted by life but still full of fight.
I listened to this as an audiobook, and the narrator did a great job of making Cara feel real. Cara’s story is narrated in the first person, but other details are shared through the paperwork she files through the course of the program, which makes for some interesting reading! Beautifully–written and thought-provoking, with humor, a whole lot of heart, and an endearing protagonist whose story will make you smile, sob, laugh out loud, and cheer her on. This is a short but impactful and memorable read that I would definitely recommend.