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Sunstruck Paperback – March 3, 2009


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 236 pages
  • Publisher: Zumaya Embraces (March 3, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1934841188
  • ISBN-13: 978-1934841181
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,842,294 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Mayra Calvani writes fiction and nonfiction for children and adults and has authored over a dozen books, some of which have won awards. Her stories, reviews, interviews and articles have appeared on numerous publications such as The Writer, Writer's Journal, Multicultural Review, and Bloomsbury Review, among many others. Represented by Serendipity Literary.

She lives in Belgium with her husband of 25+ years, 2 wonderful kids, and her two beloved pets. When she's not writing, reading, editing or reviewing, she enjoys walking her dog, traveling, and spending time with her family.

Visit her website at www.MayraCalvani.com. For her children's books, visit www.MayrasSecretBookcase.com.

Favorite writing quotes:

"You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you." ~Ray Bradbury

"Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand." ~George Orwell, "Why I Write," 1947

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Talk about a nutty twisty book this is it and all in good fun.
Barbara Hightower
Ms. Calvani has a gift for describing a scene that makes the reader, at least this reader, feel like she's there, experiencing the events along with the characters.
Beverly Stowe McClure
The author does a great job exposing the deranged and macabre ways of the other characters in the story.
speak4languages

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Sunstruck was of interest to me in part because the author Calvani lives in San Juan, Puerto Rico and this is where Sunstruck comes to life. Having been born in Puerto Rico myself I found it fascinating to run into an author from the island. I found Sunstruck to be quite funny and throughout the book I caught myself laughing many times. The crazy characters and atmosphere of Old San Juan create a perfect narrative for this mix of madness. Daniella the main character seems like a regular college student until you step into her life and meet her psychotic friends. For a little while you feel Daniella's mother, a widow is the only sane one, until you find out what her true interests are. While her best and only friend fills her ear with her amor for a priest, Daniella feels there are more important things to think about. Like Zorro the psycho going around leaving his mark on the rear ends of woman. Sunstruck is like a nutty Whodunit with a little twist. Who really is in the Zorro costume? With all the crazy characters I caught myself pointing fingers again and again. A great read that will make you forget where you are, while you giggle yourself to complete oblivion from all the silliness.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Margaret L. Fieland on April 3, 2011
Format: Paperback
Daniella, an architecture student living in San Juan, is surrounded with mysteries. Why has Ishmael, Daniella's ex-husband, opened a hotel for animals? Why are young women disappearing, not even leaving a body behind? Who is Zorro, a masked man marking min-skirted young women on the rear?
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Calvini has assembled a wonderfully weird cast of characters: Daniella herself, an architecture student who keeps getting involved with the wrong kind of man, her mother, fond of retail therapy, Ismael, Daniella's ex-husband, now married to the truly creepy Irene, nicknamed appropriately Lady Dracula by Daniella, Tony, Daniella's handsome, self-centered artist boyfriend, and the mysterious Zorro.

Mayra Calvini is a master of wit. The descriptions contain just the right telling detail, as when she describes Daniella's red hair as the color you'd get if you mixed brandy, carrots, and raspberries in a blender. Calvini makes the absurd seem reasonable. I found myself nodding at death from hiccups, coffee enemas, and drugged cats. The writing is exquisite, and the narrative strangely compelling. Do yourself a favor and snap this one up.
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By Brenda Demko on September 12, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
I'd give it three and 1/2 stars if I could. I can't say I liked it but it was enjoyable.

Sunstruck was a unique book. The plot was full of bizarre characters and intrigue.

If you are looking for something quirky, this may be just what you're looking for!

I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. It was honestly unlike anything I've ever read before.
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By N. Medina on September 9, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
Daniella has always done her best to make the most of the life she's lived. She's dealt with her father leaving at an early age and an ex-husband who blames her for his past failures. Her mother seems to think that there's something more meaningful waiting for her out there, but only if she allows herself to see it. Unfortunately, she's not willing to live by someone else's rules other than her own.

Immersed within her architecture studies, Daniella yearns for a life where she doesn't have to wait hand and foot on men who seem to think she's some sort of doormat. Her most meaningful relationship has been with her cat, Commando, but she knows he doesn't really count. Her boyfriend, Tony, seems to be immersed within his own little world, looking forward to his paintings whenever possible. At times, she swears off men and tells herself that she'll eventually do something about the situations she now finds herself in. Yet as the days go by, nothing changes and she finds herself back at square one.

Her ex-husband soon introduces her to his new wife at a soiree one day, causing her to contemplate as to what the man actually sees in her. She's old and scrawny and she reminds her of the female version of Dracula. Then there's the fact that there's an odd smell about her, one Daniella can't quite place.

When Tony garners an unexpected success, Daniella realizes just how different things are between them. His passion is his art and he doesn't really take any notice of her. Deep inside, she yearns to have him show her a little more affection than he's shown her in the past. Yet as he immerses himself within his ultimate passion, she knows it's the one thing that will never happen.

Daniella begins to spend more time with her mother and her best friend, Mari Carmen.
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Format: Paperback
Reviewed by: Sandra L

Review: First off: the cover--confusing but alluring, like a painting you can't take your eyes off of.

Then we get into the story. Daniella is a college student--nice, friendly, normal. I wonder why she was hanging out with such weird (and crazy) people, like her art critic ex-husband and his gothic, witch-like wife or her dope-smoking, live-in boyfriend that hates her cat. Was she lost or confused or something?

At times, I felt Daniella had no mind of her own. She says she wants to be "free of men" but yet she does nothing about it. Did she have "daddy issues?" Maybe it would've added more to the story if we had learned more about Daniella's absent father figure.

The whole story has many different points of view, but it is mainly told from the eyes of Daniella--a pro in my column, because I know who is the "star." I am always concerned with multi-POVs because there is usually a lack of focus; but this book didn't have that issue.

Another character I found interesting was Zorro, the crazy psycho who makes his mark with a huge "Z" on womens' bare ass. Very funny!

With Zorro suddenly in the mix, it made me question on whether this was a thriller or a mystery? Was the objective to catch Zorro and bring him to justice?

I thought the whole animal hotel from Ismael, Daniella's ex, was of little interest to me. At times, I didn't even read the whole paragraph on it. But don't be fooled! As you approach the end, strange mysteries--dark and gory--spring out of nowhere and you can't wait to unravel them all. Is Ismael a mushroom dealer? Is "Lady Dracula" a real vampire? The end will leave you shocked.
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