Julio, a young man of Puerto Rican and Ecuadorian origin who lives in the Spanish Harlem neighborhood of New York, suffers from strange visions. When he decides to believe Taina, a girl from his school who is pregnant, but who claims to be a virgin, his blind love for her unleashes a whirlwind of emotions that will lead Julio to question his parents, his religion and even the basic principles of science. Next to the uncle of Taina, an ex-convict with a dark past known as “El Vejigante,” Julio becomes involved in a network of crimes that, although they will finally bring him closer to Taina, will also end by revealing a family secret from which he will not leave unscathed.
“Latin American magical realism leaps over any borders and ends up in the barrio of Spanish Harlem. A love story, coming-of-age story, a mystery, a whodunit story, and ultimately a story of true love in the broadest sense.” —Julia Álvarez, author of In the Time of the Butterflies
“Taína is a searing search for the meaning in what we choose to believe and the stories we tell ourselves. . . . This novel’s belief and trust in love is something we desperately need to hear.”
—Helena Viramontes, author of Under the Feet of Jesus