Review: The Existence of Pity

The Existence of Pity
The Existence of Pity by Jeannie Zokan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Over one summer Josie’s world is turned upside down with secrets. Growing up in Cali, Colombia as the daughter of Baptist missionaries Josie’s parents expect her to be as perfect a child as their elder son. Although Josie is a good daughter her beliefs are beginning to change and she wants to explore more into faith than just being a Baptist and finds herself drawn to Catholicism. Josie is not the only member of her family to keep secrets though, her parents and her brother have their own that threaten to change their family forever.

I am not a very religious person myself, but I found Josie’s story relatable in her finding something that she can find comfort in. The highlight of this story for me was reading about Josie’s relationship with her the family maid, Blanca. They each helped the other adapt to the different worlds they found themselves in and became good friends. While Josie’s parents drove me crazy with their obliviousness especially towards her brother. It seemed like they only paid attention to Josie when they needed her to do something or if they thought she did something wrong. I mean if my teenager daughter woke up in the middle of the night screaming (on multiple occasions) I would be concerned, but her parents just seemed to ignore it while Josie turned to Blanca for comfort. Ms. Zokan describes Columbia beautifully and I found these descriptions to be very enjoyable. I would be interested in reading more of Josie’s story, though I’m not sure if I’ll get the chance…(hint!)? I rated this book four out of five stars.

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