Cover Image: The Inheritance of Orquídea Divina

The Inheritance of Orquídea Divina

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Member Reviews

I can not express with words how much i loved this book! I couldn't put it down. This story is about a family who travels back to their roots in Ecuador. 
I loved the characters and how the author brought them to life. I plan to reread this one
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an interesting read with interesting imagery. i loved how the characters were developed! the writing definitely won me over. (rtc)
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Wow. 4 wows to be exact, well, almost 5 wows. The writing style is gorgeously stunning, and the story is so original, fresh and magical that it will whisk you away to a unique world. It's rare to find a book that you can just keep reading, not worried about the time. I stumbled through the transitions of time and character but that was due to my personal taste and no fault of the author. The only quality that bugged me was my biggest pet peeve- too much description. Some settings and characters were detailed more than needed to set the scene. Overall, I'm very impressed with this author and excited to read her other work. Thank you to #NetGalley for offering this book.
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I was so, so pleased to have gotten an ARC of this wonderful, magical and simply delightful new novel by Zoraida Córdova! It is my first foray into her work, though I've heard nothing but good stuff and I can guarantee it will not be my last.

Told in alternating timelines, following the titular Orquídea Divina in her youth, and three of her grand-children and one great-grandchild, Marimar, Rey, Tatinelly and her daughter, Rhiannon, this is a story of the strength of family (and how much they can annoy us!) and just what one will do to feel power when they are born powerless.

The mysterious Orquídea Divina showed up in Four Rivers with a house in her pocket and a determination to protect herself and her family from something she won't name. Five husbands later plus a plethora of children, grandchildren, and a great-grandchild on the way, she calls he family home to claim their inheritance. Growing up in the magnificent house in Four Rivers, where the pantry never runs dry, the floors are scrubbed with a mixture of lemon, salt and herbs to keep evil out, and stories of fairies, Ecuadorian river monsters, and duendes are gospel truth, the Montoya's are used to the strange. What they find upon arrival, though, beggars belief, and sends them into a dangerous game of survival and truth.

I loved every second of this book. From the very first page I knew this was exactly my kind of book, and unless Cordova did something drastic, it wouldn't dip beneath a five star rating! I really enjoyed the dynamic of the large family (I've always wished to have a large family!), and how in the end, they come together to protect what's theirs despite their differences. This novel is certainly one of the most original takes on magic I've read in a long time, and while I kind of guessed the identity of the unnamed threat, it did nothing to diminish the exhilarating ride that was The Inheritance of Orquídea Divina!
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This story was completely magical. I adored the writing and I lost myself constantly in these pages. I loved the characters and how the magic worked in this world.
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What a wonderful story. The blurb  let me know that I was in for a great ride, and it didn’t disappoint. Wonderful world building and character development.
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i've always adored Cordova's works and this was no exception. i read it a while ago and i dont remember too much (my memory isnt the best when it comes to books) but i remember enjoying it.
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This is my first Zoraida Córdova book, and after reading I have to say I’m a fan. This story was so delightfully weird and mystical, and it’s the first time in a while I haven’t been able to put a book down. I love stories that span multiple generations, and give multiple points of view from members of a unique and complex family. I can’t think of a better example of the term “magical realism” because while there are supernatural elements, they all felt strangely believable in the world we live in. The prose was lovely, the characters relatable, and the highs and lows gutwrenching. If you want an immersive story that grips you from the very start, this is it.
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Is this me giving a book with magical realism 5 stars? 
I finally found my kind of magical realism and this book is it!! 

So enchanting,  so beautiful,  and so heartbreaking at the same time. 

I connected so much to this book on so many levels but the most to the Spanish influences and lore and old wives tales thrown in because while I may not be from Ecuador my family is Mexican and Spanish and I grew up listening to all the same little life lessons and hearing about moving wallpaper from aunties and river monsters and when I leave this existence I hope to be reincarnated as a tree. 

If I can crawl in this book and live with these characters and their flawed but perfect selves I'd be so happy. 

I wanna say more but I don't want to ruin the magic of this story. 
Just know this is a slightly more mature book than most ya But if y'all can read sjm you will be alright.
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For me this was a really enjoyable story. Like the way the point of view of the narrator changed but it still one fluid story and the flashbacks added to the stories and profiles of the characters was done really nicely. I loved the descriptions of the valley and the characters. You can feel the depths of their magic in the words.  And also relatable family connections and stories of how  the relate to each other and the world around them and the world outside of Four Rivers. Orquidea and her personality and magic and secrets will have you continually turning the page and to discover more about her and the magic and secrets of her bloodlines. As a girl from a big Afrolatinx family I really enjoyed everything this book had to offer. I was originally pulled in my the cover art and author and the story itself has become a new fave.
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Thank you to Atri Books for an eARC in exchange for an honest review!

This book was pure MAGIC. I loved that we start off knowing absolutely nothing about Orquídea until we learn her entire life through flashbacks. I loved the magic system and the slow unveiling of all of Orquídea's secrets, and how fine with it most of her family is. 

It started off a little strange, but I adjusted to the style of writing. I've read a few or Zoraida Córdova's short stories, but htis was my first full-length novel, and was it a good one! I will definitely be recommending this to people!

Amazing rep all around.
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The Inheritance of Orquídea Divina is a fantasy book that follows two timelines:
1. Orquídea Divina's past upbringing and
2. Her descendants' future, after attending her funeral

The imagery in this book was BEAUTIFUL.  Every page was like a movie playing out in my mind (and, in fact, I think this would make a fantastic movie!).  Orquídea Divina was an incredibly likable character and I was rooting for her the whole time.

I was really intrigued by the concept, and enjoyed what I read, but was left feeling unsatisfied with the ending and the amount of detail in the story.

I was expecting something with a lot more action and mystery (a la "Knives Out", "The Inheritance Games", or something Agatha Christie), but I found it to be more like a character study.  I never really felt like anyone was in danger or anything was at stake.  I wish we had more background and depth for some of the supporting/antagonist characters - I found it hard to understand their motivations.

I also think that the large number of POVs made it difficult to feel attached to any given character (other than Orquídea Divina).

I also felt like all of the action was smooshed into the last few chapters, and I would have liked to have seen it more evenly spread throughout the book, especially in the present.

Overall, I enjoyed the read, but wish it was a bit longer or structured differently so we could go more in depth.

I think fans of Caraval and The Night Circus would enjoy this book!

Thank you to Atria Books and Netgalley for the gifted e-ARC!
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Zoraida Córdova's prose is lush, and some of her metaphors seriously take my breath away. I typically hate the phrase "compulsively readable," but in this case, I think it fits; I can never put her books down! I loved her Brooklyn Brujas series, and was very happy to read an adult fiction novel.

The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina is about family, secrets, trauma, and loss. "Family," in the novel, is not simply blood relatives, but instead those to whom you are related that you choose as family. The Montoyas are a large family, but not all of them act like family, including the titular character.

The novel has two timelines: Orquidea's life to her death intertwines with the events starting at her funeral. There are several narrators as the story unfolds, truly fleshing out the experiences of everyone involved. By the end, the family has finally healed and come together, recovering from years of loss and lies.

The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina is, of course, great for fans of Cordova's other work, as well as anyone who loves a story about family with a heavy dose of magic. Despite having "adult themes," it would be fine for older teens. I suspect/hope this novel will win a bunch of awards.
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All the praise this book is getting is 100% deserved. It is a beautiful book with amazing imagery and detail. I loved reading this story and found myself completely sucked in. The writing is solid and the characters developed and interesting. The end felt a little drawn out but otherwise a truly awesome book to read that I would highly recommend everyone read. I will definitely be purchasing a copy when it’s released.
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This book is magical. I couldn't put it down once I started reading it. This is the sort of book you revisit every few years. It leaves you thinking. The writing is phenomenal. The magic is amazing. It's an easy 5 stars.
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An Atmospheric, lush, and unforgettable novel full of magic, and myth. Equal parts strange and stunning — this book reels you in, and keeps you hooked, page after page. This book kept surprising me - and reading it was the epitome of fun! This book made me laugh out loud, it made me tear up, it made me rage, and it made me believe in magic. 

I loved the dynamics and the exploration of family - the messiness, the pain, the love, the strange traditions, and the lengths we go to protect the ones we love. 

This story was many stories in one - and I soaked up every word like a sponge, it was just so compelling. There is nothing i would change about this book, except I wish it was longer. I loved learning Orquídea’s story, and this was the perfect pairing of magical realism, and family drama. This book was a joy to read - and a reminder of the magic of a word, after a word, after a word.

I can’t wait for more people to love this strange, wonderful story. 🌷

For fans of: Chloe Benjamin’s The Immortalists, & V.E. Schwab’s The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue
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Coming soon…September 2021

“The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina”
By Zoraida Cordova

With prognosticators in agreement that the planetary convergences over Guayaquil, Ecuador, on the two days of Orquidea Montoya’s birth (she determinedly kicked part-way out before midnight, May 14th; then with the umbilical cord wrapped around her neck, she was fully delivered minutes later on May 15th), her life would be filled with adversity and misfortune—the devil's own luck, if any luck at all. 

“…Orquídea Montoya was untethered to the world by fate. The two most important moments of her life had been predetermined by the stars. First, her birth. And second, the day she stole her fortune.”         
“The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina” by Zoraida Cordova

Isabela Montoya, the baby’s mother, primarily blamed her own sins for creating bad luck surrounding Orquidea.  

“…Though she lived a stone’s throw from her childhood home (Isabella), the Montoyas didn’t want anything to do with the unwed mother and unlucky girl.  A bxxxxxd daughter was never to inherit land, titles, her father’s surname, or even love, which would have been free, had that strain of the Montoya clan been in possession of it…”       "The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina” by Zoraida Cordova

Astrological Signs, Planets and Stars could be second in creating her daughter’s unpredictable future her mother reasoned.  Little did Isabella Montoya know that she was right on both counts.

“…Orquídea had…Bad luck woven into the birthmarks that dotted her shoulders and chest like constellations. Bad luck that felt like the petty vengeance of a long-forgotten god…”   
“The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina” by Zoraida Cordova

At an early age, Orquidea developed survivalist skills and independence. She was fierce and could gut a fish in three-seconds.  As Orquidea matured, her budding radiance drew attention, but not admiration nor love at home.  

Her urge for greater autonomy and travel grew.  These wishes were granted when a touring circus, The Londoño Spectacular Spectacular, performed in Orquidea’s home town.  With her filled backpack, she pleaded with the circus owner, Bolívar Londoño III, for a job.  Her request was well-received.

…”He loved everything about her. The shape of her legs, the burnt sienna of her skin, the way her innocent smile made him want to stop breathing. So enchanted was he by Orquídea Montoya, that he smuggled her on the ship to Paris, and figured out a way to procure her documents…”       
 “The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina” by Zoraida Cordova

The unloved little daughter was determined to rewrite her fate.  She would get on the boat with Bolívar Londoño III, sail to Europe with the Circus and begin a new life—as Orquidea Divina!  She would curse the stars and luck—anyone and anything that stood in her way.

Little did Orquidea realize then that one man who wished for her with all of his brittle and unfaithful heart, as well as a true living, radiant lucky star—who would bestow on her temporary magical power, luck and good fortune—would both later vengefully haunt her existence through generations into the future.

…”Someone out there was searching for her. She felt it only for a moment, but she doubled the protection charms on the house, the candles on her altar, the salt in the grain. There would come a time when her past caught up to her and Orquídea’s debt to the universe would be collected. But first, she had a long life to live…”       “The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina” by Zoraida Cordova.

One day all of Orquidea’s progeny receive mysterious, simultaneous invitations for her funeral, stating they are to come to receive their inheritances--although she's still alive.  When the family members converge in the small community of Four Rivers, chaos reins.  Orquidea isn't the same; they are being stalked by a shimmering deadly presence; and Orquidea's house feels unsafe..

“…But from what? From whom? Who could possibly want this curse?...”  
 “The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina” by Zoraida Cordova.

What exactly is the inheritance of Orquidea Divina?  How did she become divine?  How did she steal her luck?  What is pursuing her family members and why?

“…“The bargain Orquídea made. It’s coming back for us...”   “The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina” 
by Zoraida Cordova.

Travel the vivid portraiture, lyrical prose and unforgettable worlds seen in the magical realism of “The Inheritance of Orquidea Divina” by Zoraida Cordova. This is is a literary masterwork that is a fast read because you just can’t turn the pages fast enough.

The Book Maven’s Journal—Reviews for Word Connoisseurs

REVIEWER:                J.Hunt         
STAR RATING            ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

My Sincere Appreciation to NetGalley, Author Zoraida Cordova, Atria Books and Simon & Schuster, Inc., for Providing an Advance Reader Copy (ARC) for Review.

Book Reviews 
by TheBookMavenJoy 
are also on Goodreads.
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There is so much happening in this book!  The stories alternate.  At first, I thought it may be distracting to be in a different character’s head during different timelines.  It wasn’t.  Orquídea is a strong character.  We don’t become privy to what gives her this strength until she tells us her story.  When I read Orquídea’s history, it didn’t feel like a flashback really.  It was like I was transported back in time to witness what happened in her life.

In the present, Marimar and her family all have reasons for not wanting to go back to Four Rivers.  The family doesn’t really believe in their magic, but Orquídea blesses a select few as she passes.  Most of the Montoyas retreat back into their lives.  Marimar and Rey stay in Four Rivers, and after a while, Rey moves back to New York.  Seven years later the family comes back together for safety.  Marimar and her cousins try to learn more about the threat and eventually confront it.

The main characters are well-rounded.  The glimpse of the family helps make Marimar, Rey, Rhiannon, Tatinelly, and Orquídea step off the page.  The description is colorful.  I’ve never been to Ecuador, but I feel I could recognize the city of Guayaquil by the monument of Guayas and Quil.

I don’t know if there’s any mythology in the story that is specifically from Ecuador.  I want to find out more about the River Monster.  The idea of a living star isn’t new, but his story was new to me and I did enjoy it.

Personal Note:
I love researching mythologies.  This isn’t a story of witches.  Orquídea finds the River Monster before she is blessed with magic.  What else is in Ecuador’s history that I don’t know about?  I will have to learn more.  I see Zoraida Cordova has more books and will definitely be looking at the Brooklyn Brujas series.

I received an advance review copy for free from NetGalley and am leaving my honest review voluntarily.

I will be adding this review to my website

#TheInheritanceofOrquideaDivina #ZoraidaCordova #NetGalley #SciFi #Fantasy #Ecuador
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Absolutely adored this long-awaited work by Zoraida Cordova! This tale of family ties, the search for answers, and a power that seeks to destroy an entire family line did not disappoint, and kept me riveted to my seat till the very end. 

The writing was beautiful and flowed wonderfully, the pacing was perfect, and I just can't gush enough about how much I loved it!
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OMG. I am so thankful to have gotten the chance to read this amazing book!

The characters practically glittered, so real and dimensional. 
The story was amazing, and it really drew me in! Be prepared to drop everything to finish this, it's really that good!
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