Saturday 20 November 2021

Book Review: This World Does Not Belong to Us by Natalia García Freire (Literary Fiction)

Title: This World Does Not Belong to Us
Author: Natalia García Freire
Publisher: World Editions
Publication Date: 24 May 2022 (2019)
Format: eBook - EPUB
Genre: Literary Fiction
Source: ARC via NetGalley

After years away, Lucas returns uninvited to the home he was expelled from as a child. The garden has been conquered by weeds, which blanket his mother’s beloved flowerbeds and his father’s grave alike. A lot has changed since Eloy and Felisberto were invited into the family home to work for Lucas’s father, long ago. The two hulking strangers have brought the land and everyone on it under their control—and removed nuisances like Lucas. Now everything rots. Lucas, a hardened young man, turns to a world that thrives in dirt and darkness: the world of insects. In raw, lyrical prose, García Freire portrays a world brought low by human greed, while hinting at glimmers of hope in the unlikeliest places.


This World Does Not Belong to Us by Natalia García Freire is a lyrical novella that touches on a number of themes in its short page count, including death, family relationships, connection with nature and religious belief. It has a lot to say, and it does so in a succinct way, but now and then I found myself wishing for the book to be a little longer, so it could explore these ideas more fully. Lucas was an interesting character and I was immediately drawn into his world and his feelings, and overall I found the story thought provoking and evocative. For me, it was a 3.5-star read that I will round up to a four.

I received this book as a free eBook ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.


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