Novelist and poet Theresa Varela continues her practice of writing about familiar characters in Brooklyn, New York, where she was born and has since lived. In her novel, Coney Island Siren, we enter the life of Maggie Fuentes, an attractive nurse who is in a relationship with equally attractive Frank Ramirez, a police officer. While the couple is strolling through Coney Island, a favorite hangout, Maggie finds a handwritten journal in a flea market. The author, Ellen, lived in the nineteenth century. It seems the women are kindred spirits and that Ellen has summoned Maggie to read the journal. It’s not long before Maggie recognizes the dark, parallel existence they share and what role the men in their lives played. With elements of magical realism, readers of Coney Island Siren will latch on to Maggie, empathize with her, and think about the real-life Maggies in the world.
Coney Island Siren is Theresa Varela’s third novel. It follows Nights of Indigo Blue: A Daisy Muñiz Mystery and Covering the Sun with My Hand – each honoring Theresa with first and second place awards, respectively, from the International Latino Book Awards in 2016 and 2015. Answered by Silence is her collection of poems and Graciella la Gitana Oracle, also an award winner, helps readers with insightful meditation. Visit Theresa’s website, LatinaLibations on Writing and All Things of the Spirit, to read the synopsis for each of these intriguing publications in her body of work. Theresa’s fascinating bio is on the site, too, along with Graciella’s Page where she blogs and offers spiritual guidance. Subscribe to her newsletter while there!
Theresa Varela brands herself as an Award-winning Nuyorican author; however, she is also a Ph.D. and works in a NYC homeless shelter for women as a psychiatric nurse practitioner, undoubtedly, much appreciated. And surely, her position was a source for Coney Island Siren.
Theresa, I’m loving this Brooklyn postcard featuring The Brooklyn Bridge. I see on the back of the card that it was built in 1883. I wonder if people realize how old it is. New York City, with all its boroughs, continues to be a treat whenever I’m there. Maybe I’ll get to Coney Island next time!
Thank you for adding this beauty to my postcard collection and for the Book-lyn greeting. 🙂