Just in time for the holiday season, award-winning author Laura Esquivel brings the next chapter of international best-seller Like Water for Chocolate to life with the introduction of two books to expand the story into a trilogy collection. Tita’s Diary, the second book, takes an intimate look at the life of the best-selling novel’s main character, who embodies love, passion, and the communication of emotions through food in early 20th Century México. The Colors of My Past, the third book is an ode to female independence and centers around Maria who reconnects with her roots and family traditions after discovering Tita’s Diary.
As many continue to quarantine around the world during these unprecedented times, Laura Esquivel’s two new books as part of the famed Like Water for Chocolate’s saga are ideal holiday gifts for anyone on your list – for those who loves magical realism, those who love to cook will delight in these never before released recipes in the second book and those who love music will become enraptured with the original soundtrack in the third book. Since spending for holidays may be tight due to the pandemic, these books are great gift ideas for the budget conscious with prices under $25USD in paperback via Amazon and Kindle versions are even less expensive at under $15USD.
As the second part of this trilogy, Tita’s Diary covers a span of twenty years not included in the original book. When Tita falls in love with Pedro, she is told that as the youngest of three sisters, she will never be allowed to marry as she will need to care for her mother.
Of the creative inspiration, Esquivel remarked, “I was surprised at how–at every event I was invited to–young people would come up to have Like Water for Chocolate signed. Young, college, high school kids, telling me they identified with Tita. I began to wonder why. It is not like they have a Mamá Elena who is forbidding them to live the life they want to live. And then it hit me. It is not a castrating mother, it is a castrating systemthat now limits if they can have access to an education, to a decent salary, to healthcare.
So, I began to write a sequel in the present day, centered on María–a descendant of the De La Garza family– who has lost her ancestor’s magic connection to food and cooking and instead has an eating disorder and lives an unhealthy life. It’s Maria who finds Tita’s Diary–the only thing to survive the Ranch fire– and through it finds her way back to a different way of relating to planting, harvesting, cooking, sharing meals…and then I decided that Tita’s Diary should be its own book, because it could possibly heal others as it heals María.”
Released both during a pandemic, and at a time when travel is limited and the restlessness of staying home is high, Tita’s Diary reminds readers of the exploration and connection available through a deeply captivating story. Adding in the magic of igniting all five senses, Tita’s Diary is the physical manifestation of the character’s dream – to share her thoughts on love, food, and alchemy.
The story transports readers to another time and place, bringing to light a secret allowing readers to rediscover their own understanding of intimacy. Page after page brings forward never-before-seen real family photos, hand-pressed flower arrangements from the author’s garden, and newly released recipes not included in the original novel, including Corundas, a black corn tamale; and Champurrado, a thick chocolate-flavored drink, among many more recipes.
The final book, The Colors of My Past focuses on María who is addicted to food after having been abandoned by her husband after the birth of their first child. In the midst of an onslaught of racist and sexist attacks, she is rescued by her estranged grandmother Lucía, who leads her to discover Tita’s Diary. Upon reading Tita’s Diary, María is able to reconnect with her roots and unveil family secrets as she dives into a world of experimentation and transformation of the natural world that she has never experienced before. The Colors of My Past is a novel that knows no boundaries, an epic spanning several generations about free and passionate women who never back down in the face of adversity. The third book includes an original soundtrack to enhance your reading experience by scanning the QR codes in each chapter.
First published thirty years ago, the international best-seller Like Water for Chocolate sold over seven million copies around the world and was published in 36 languages. The book was adapted for film and debuted as a Spanish-language movie in 1992 and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film. It became the highest-grossing foreign language film ever released in the United States at the time.
This year brings the addition of two books completing to the trilogy. Tita’s Diary and The Colors of My Past are now available both in eBook and Paperback format from Amazon. The release comes at the same time as the announcement of the development of a Like Water for Chocolate musical with original music by Grammy Award-winning Latin group La Santa Cecilia, lyrics by La Santa Cecilia and Pulitzer Prize winner Quiara Alegría Hudes (In the Heights) and a book by Lisa Loomer. Like Water for Chocolate will be directed by Tony Award winner Michael Mayer. A preview of the original score is available at www.broadwaycares.org.
Born on September 30, 1950, in Mexico City, Mexico, Laura Esquivel began writing while working as a kindergarten teacher. She wrote plays for her students and then went on to write children’s television programs during the 1970s and 1980s. Esquivel often explores the relationship between men and women in Mexico in her work. She is best known for Like Water for Chocolate (1990), an imaginative and compelling combination of novel and cookbook. It had been released in Mexico a year earlier. After the release of the film version in 1992, Like Water for Chocolate became internationally known and loved. The book has sold more than 4.5 million copies. Esquivel has continued to show her creative flair and lyrical style in her later work. Accompanied by a collection of music, her second novel The Law of Love (1996) combined romance and science fiction. Between the Fires (2000) featured essays on life, love, and food. Her novel, Malinche (2006), explores the life of a near mythic figure in Mexican history-the woman who served as Spanish conquistador Hernán Cortés’s interpreter and mistress.