The Five Wounds

By Kirstin Valdez Quade,

Book cover of The Five Wounds

Book description

It's Holy Week in the small town of Las Penas, New Mexico, and thirty-three-year-old unemployed Amadeo Padilla has been given the part of Jesus in the Good Friday procession. He is preparing feverishly for this role when his fifteen-year-old daughter Angel shows up pregnant on his doorstep and disrupts his…

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Why read it?

2 authors picked The Five Wounds as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Las Penas, New Mexico, is the setting for this moving novel that follows a year in the lives of the Padilla family. Valdez Quade creates characters with dazzling depth, and you’ll root for the Padillas as they stumble through twelve months, where everything they know is upended and destabilized.

The way this book portrays community reminds me of a favorite Sally Rooney quote from Normal People: “No one can be independent of other people completely, so why not give up the attempt, she thought, go running in the other direction, depend on people for everything, allow them to depend…

From Alina's list on exploring how place shapes community.

The Five Wounds does that beautiful thing fiction can sometimes do: show readers flawed characters and make you love them anyway.

I also love books that show the effects of religious fervor on individuals and communities, the way that spiritual communities can simultaneously cause pain and heal. Somehow Quade manages to write the deep contradictions that exist in community, and make you see it all with love. I also love how she portrays the complexity of communities that embrace both queer and straight characters.

A brilliant book.

From Lucy's list on not-the-same-old queer stories.

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