Monsoon Mansion

Monsoon Mansion by Cinelle Barnes is a memoir about her experiences growing up in the Philippines before she immigrated to America. I read this as part of an Instagram buddy read for the Fierce Females Book Club that I am a part of where we read a book each month written by a female author.

Cinelle's father worked hard and made millions early on and they settled into a large mansion named "Mansion Royale". She grew up accustomed to a home with endless bedrooms and a staff to accommodate her every need. Slowly the money starts to run out and her mother is forced to give up some of her prized designer clothes, jewelry, tailors, maids and services. With the decline in money also comes an increase in her mother's anger and irrationality driving a further wedge between her parents.

When a 40 day monsoon hits and floods the house, money becomes even more scarce. Her father leaves her and her brother with their mother at the mansion in an attempt to find ways to make money. Her mother soon finds a lover in Norman, an American monster who has his own ideas of how to make money and he turns Mansion Royale into a true house of horrors.

This book sounded so good from the premise but was so hard for me to get into. The wording is incredibly lyrical, which I struggle with following as a reader sometimes. Cinelle's story is powerful and she experienced an incredibly traumatic childhood that no one should ever have had to live through. For lovers of incredibly descriptive prose you will probably really enjoy living in this world and experiencing her story.
Book Rating: ☕☕

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