Musings of a Future Librarian: The Agüero Sisters

Christina García’s novel, The Agüero Sisters follows the lives of sisters Constancia and Reina Agüero, two Cuban women who sit on different ends of the spectrum. Reina is a strong independent electrician and is built like a model, whereas Constancia desires to be taken care of and is much more petite and fair-skinned than her sister.  The novel begins with the death of their mother, Blanca Mestre, and flips back and forth from present day to the past. The piece is mostly told by an omniscient third person narrator, but also uses first person narration in  chapters narrated by their father, Ignacio Agüero. One of the primary conflicts in the novel is the relationship between the sisters, that of which has been affected by their mother’s domineering presence and their father’s submissive nature. To elaborate, Constancia’s disdain for her mother stems from the fact that Blanca once abandoned Constancia and her father, only to return beaten and pregnant with her sister, Reina. We also see Blanca’s authoritarian presence when she sends Constancia away after Reina is born. Blanca does not like how Constancia acts towards Reina and decides she must go. Ignacio does not argue against this decision. Additional hints at Blanca’s strong will can be seen when Ignacio speaks of her as well. He tells us, “The first time Blanca Mestre walked into my biology class…she sent a shiver through the room. There was something about her presence–quiet,luminescent, distracted — that stirred people, although it did not induce them to get close to her” (Garcia 182). 

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