Patron Saints of Nothing

Patron Saints of Nothing

Book - 2019
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When seventeen-year-old Jay Reguero learns his Filipino cousin and former best friend, Jun, was murdered as part of President Duterte's war on drugs, he flies to the Philippines to learn more.
Publisher: New York, NY :, Kokila,, [2019]
ISBN: 9780525554912
0525554912
Branch Call Number: TEEN FICTION Ribay Randy 06/2019
Characteristics: xv, 323 pages ;,22 cm

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When seventeen-year-old Jay Reguero learns his Filipino cousin and former best friend, Jun, was murdered as part of President Duterte's war on drugs, he flies to the Philippines to learn more.

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JCLChrisK Dec 17, 2019

Jay visits extended family in the Philippines to unravel the mystery of his cousin's disappearance and death in this powerful story of grief, growth, culture, drugs, and family. Engaging, thoughtful, and satisfying.


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JCLChrisK Dec 17, 2019

I was so close to feeling like I had Jun's story nailed down. But no. That's not how stories work, is it? They are shifting things that re-form with each new telling, transform with each new teller. Less a solid, and more a liquid taking the shape of its container.

JCLChrisK Dec 17, 2019

I'm simultaneously bursting with pride at my cousin's integrity and hating him for his inability to suppress it like the rest of us do with such ease.

JCLChrisK Dec 17, 2019

We all have the terrible and amazing power to hurt and help, to harm and heal. We all do both throughout our lives. That’s the way it is. I suppose we just go on and do the best we can and try to do more good than bad using our time in Earth.

JCLChrisK Dec 17, 2019

I will try not to judge because I have no idea what you were struggling with in your heart, what complicated your soul. None of us are just one thing, I guess.

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MFLORES_1
Mar 23, 2020

Randy Ribay's Patron Saints of Nothing taught me how capable YA fiction can be in the right hands. Ribay uses his protagonist to explore complex social issues and the power of personal narrative. Provoking and raw, this explores the life of a teenage Filipino-American named Jay in a cultural coming-of-age story after the death of his cousin. Sometimes driven by anger, sometimes by grief, Jay takes it on himself to learn when he must take action and when he must sit down and listen to the stories around him.

As a Pinoy (Filipino-American) myself, I admittedly wasn't sure how much I'd like this book. I was worried that the author might downplay Filipino culture in order to be more approachable to a wider audience. The last thing I wanted was for Jay to feel like a caricature instead of a person. Thankfully, Ribay didn't do that. Jay's experiences in this story mirror the experiences of many Filipinos who immigrated to or were born in the States, and the author manages to flesh out the experiences of mainland and stateside Filipinos with a wide cast of complex, emotional characters.

I was overall surprised and provoked by this book. It explored many topics I wasn't expecting it to, and carefully navigated real-world political turmoil with tact and grace. Most of all, it made me cry, and that is one of the best compliments I can give any story.

JCLChrisK Dec 17, 2019

Jay visits extended family in the Philippines to unravel the mystery of his cousin's disappearance and death in this powerful story of grief, growth, culture, drugs, and family. Engaging, thoughtful, and satisfying.

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