I was sent an EARC of A safe place with you by César L. Baquerizo for an honest review.
This story is about a group of teenagers who under different circumstances get sent to a clinic were they heal people who are gay/bi. People don’t know and don’t really care what methods are used as long as their family members are cured. The clinic in this book is called Grow and live normally and it is known for having cured a man of being gay. People pay alot of money to send their family members there because they know that they have a cure. Some of the teenagers in the clinic want to be cured and others don’t see anythung wrong with having a different sexual orientation.
The story is set in Ecuador in 1987 in the Grow and live normally clinic and in 2012.
Tomás: He is the main protagonist, he is bisexual. He is a person that always likes to include others and help those around him. He doesn’t like to upset people. He is diagnosed a schizophrenic and has amnesia. Tomás is looked at as the leader of the group and the glue that holds them together. He is the only pasient who is treated by the main Dr in the clinic.
Sebastián: He is a depressed young man who recently lost his first love Christian. Sebastian has locked himself away from the world because of what happend with his boyfriend at the same time as he still believes that there is good in the world. He is very gullible and believes in other people, something that can lead to him being let down. He is a painter.
Johana : A very quiet girl who doesn’t really speak unless she has to. She is friendly but is mostly on her own. She doesn’t really give her opinion on things the group discuss. Her past is very dark and it has lead to her shutting her self away from the world. She is a fighter and if she believes in something she will fight for it.
Sandra: A bisexual girl who believes in the cure and believes that the only way ton get out of the clinic is to let them cure them. She is a very jealous girl and gets what she wants by using what she can. She is very outspoken and talks before she thinks often sounding rude. She likes Tomás.
Fabricio: A positive young man, very happy go lucky. He is very outspoken about being gay and does not believe that there is a cure. He is anti the clinic and pretends to take his pills but doesn’t. He is fun and does not think there is anything wrong with being gay or bi. He believes that he will get out of the clinic and be happy.
Mateo: A young man who has been bullied at school. He has pretty much given up on life and is suicidal. He believes that the world is against him and wishes to die and become an angel with wings so he can help others in his situation. He is not outspoken about his sexual orientation. He has never kissed a boy before and has no experience at all. He is a writer and his dream is to live in a world were he can be happy and write even if he believes it will not happen. He wants to be cured to make his parents proud.
My thoughts on the book id that it is a book that gets you thinking. The story is based on real life clinics and that makes this book even better knowing that these type cures were normal. In the beginning it was a bit difficult for me to get into the book because there were some facts we had to know first, but once I got into it I loved it. The book tells the story of each individual about how they got to the clinic and their stay there. Some stories I liked better than others but only because I liked some characters more than others. Cèsar writes about very dark subjects in this book such as violence, murder and rape but in a way that helps us understand the characters more. I recommend people who want to read a book that makes them think to read this book. I finished it a week ago and I still think about it..