The Meaning of Consuelo

Front Cover
Beacon Press, 2004 - Fiction - 196 pages
2 Reviews
The Signe family is blessed with two daughters. Consuelo, the elder, is thought of as pensive and book-loving, the serious child-la ni a seria-while Mili, her younger sister, is seen as vivacious, a ray of tropical sunshine. Two daughters: one dark, one light; one to offer comfort and consolation, the other to charm and delight. But, for all the joy both girls should bring, something is not right in this Puerto Rican family; a tragedia is developing, like a tumor, at its core.

In this fierce, funny, and sometimes startling novel, we follow a young woman's quest to negotiate her own terms of survival within the confines of her culture and her family.


"Judith Ortiz Cofer has created a character who takes us by the hand on a journey of self-discovery. She reminds readers young and old never to forget our own responsibilities, and to enjoy life with all its joys and sorrows."--Bessy Reyna, MultiCultural Review

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - bderby - LibraryThing

The Meaning of Consuelo is a coming-of-age novel about a girl named Consuelo who is growing up in Puerto Rico. Consuelo explores her role within her family (as a woman, a sister, a daughter) as well ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - bookworm12 - LibraryThing

A young Puerto Rican girl, Consuelo, tells stories about her family and neighborhood and about taking care of her outgoing younger sister. Her best friend is her oddball male cousin who moves to New ... Read full review

Selected pages


Fulano Na nmf Soandso whats hishername tart whore MrMissMrs Nobody
MujerHombre Some Early Words
Serpientes and Azucar
Betrayals of the Tongue
Escandalos and Other Commotions
The Meaning of the Word Tragedia
The Lessons of the Forest
To Console to Comfort
Heavy Rain a Downpour
Sticks Stones and Bombas
The Ave Maria and Other Flightless Birds
And Some Songs of El Amor
Adios Borinquen

A Crown of Thorns and Roses

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About the author (2004)

Judith Ortiz Cofer was born in Hormigueros, Puerto Rico, and grew up on the island and in Paterson, New Jersey, before her family moved to Georgia. Ortiz Cofer is the author of ten books, including The Line of the Sun, The Latin Deli, and Silent Dancing: A Partial Remembrance of a Puerto Rican Childhood, and her work has been published in numerous anthologies. Her book An Island Like You: Stories of the Barrio has received several distinctions, including the American Library Association REFORMA Pura Belpre Honor Award, and it was also named a School Library Journal Best Book of the Year.

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