Houston, We Have a Problema Review
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After living apart from my military boyfriend for the last eight years, I find it hard to feel sympathetic toward couples in fiction who have minor problems. When the woman starts complaining about her man, I want to scream. At least she’s able to see him just about any time she wants, and she should appreciate that. But that’s exactly I found in Gwendolyn Zepeda’s Houston, We Have a Problema—a heroine who does nothing but complain about the men in her life.

Jessica Luna is a Latina who’s unhappy with life. Plain and simple. She wants to be successful all on her own, and she wants a man to appreciate her, settle down and be serious—and there’s nothing wrong with that. But she doesn’t want a man like the one her sister, Sabrina married—a white man with a geeky job. Jessica wants the money that comes with the geeky job but not the geeky man. What Jessica fails to see is that Sabrina is happy.

  
 
When her current love, Guillermo, seems to take advantage of her, preferring to laze away his days painting and having sex, she visits Madame Hortensia, a psychic who tells Jessica that a big change is on the horizon. Jessica immediately thinks this means a new man in her life. She does meet a new man named Jonathan, but she complains because he’s white, makes good money, and works with her brother-in-law in the corporate world. And he’s not in any hurry to sleep with her, either.

Does this woman know what she wants? Apparently not.

I found it incredibly hard to finish this novel. I kept putting it down and picking up something else—and that’s never a good sign. But I simply could not relate to Jessica. She spends most of the book complaining and expecting things to be handed to her without any effort on her part—and she doesn’t even know what she really wants.

At the same time, I really felt sorry for Guillermo. He tries so hard to please Jessica, but he always ends up saying or doing the wrong thing, and I didn’t know whether I wanted to smack him upside the head or give him a hug for his effort.

Granted, single twenty-something women might be able to relate to Jessica more than I could. After all, the men in Jessica’s life just don’t understand her. But even though Jessica does learn a thing or two by the end of the book, she’s such an unlikable character that, by then, I just didn’t care anymore. And that makes Houston, We Have a Problema a less than enjoyable read.

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