Bittersweet and erupting, Funeral for Flaca is a nostalgic memoir must-read for the aging millennial; A nodding anthem for everyone who grew up in the early 2000s. The long boyfriend tees, the calls missed/ignored from mom, and the giddy feelings of experiencing pain and love and everything in-between, for the first time. A true time capsule into spent teen dramas, first loves, and the ever-fluctuating angst that has molded us into the people we are today, Funeral for Flaca is written with so much wit and sentiment it will make you both nostalgic for the bloom of your adolescence and glad it is fixed in the past.
Prado escorts us through the maze that is coming-of-age and what happens when we finally find ourselves there, in the now. Ushering us away from the safe yet sharp ways of childhood to an adulthood that rings true and stings for many a young woman. Squaring off with delicate topics such as racism, emotional trauma, sexual assault, family dynamics and struggles with self-worth; bringing us along for one hell of an emotional ride. Prado is right there with us through our experience of these essays, the long-forgotten worlds they may open for us, how to navigate them with affection for ourselves and to help us “… croon out words we can’t find the courage to sincerely say on our own.”
The text is a tennis game attempt at self-acceptance, forgiveness, and finding the ability to love ourselves:
“I want to know what parts of me are evil. I want to know which parts of my body I should push away and which parts of my body I should hold close… But I want to know how I can find peace. Even when I hate parts of myself for killing off other parts of myself…Even when I want to know which ways to slice and carve the evil from my bones- from my body. Even when I still want to know which parts of my body are truly mine.”
There are people and experiences that shape and change us for the better and for the worse. We navigate the trials and error of our ways and of others, at what always seems like our own expense. Maybe not always coming out of it better, but coming out the best that we can. Funeral for Flaca reminds us that living is both an opportunity for growth and an opportunity for guilt and that each and every one of us is “…searching for [our] own version of healing.”