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Santa Olivia [PDF / Epub] ⚣ Santa Olivia ✈ Jacqueline Carey – Lushly written with rich and vivid characters SANTA OLIVIA is Jacueline Carey's take on comic book superheroes and the classic werewolf myth Loup Garron was born and raised in Santa Olivia an isolated Lushly written with rich and vivid characters Santa Olivia is Jacueline Carey's take on comic book superheroes and the classic werewolf myth Loup Garron was born and raised in Santa Olivia an isolated disenfranchised town next to a US military base inside a DMZ buffer zone between Texas and Mexico A fugitive Wolf Man who had a love affair with a local woman Loup's father was one of a group of men genetically manipulated and used by the US government as a weapon The Wolf Men were engineered to have superhuman strength speed sensory capability stamina and a total lack of fear and Loup named for and sharing her father's wolf like ualities is marked as an outsider After her mother dies Loup goes to live among the misfit orphans at the parish church where they seethe from the injustices visited upon the locals by the soldiers Eventually the orphans find an outlet for their frustrations They form a vigilante group to support Loup Garron who costumed as their patron saint Santa Olivia uses her special abilities to avenge the town Aware that she could lose her freedom and possibly her life Loup is determined to fight to redress the wrongs her community has suffered And like the reincarnation of their patron saint she will bring hope to all of Santa Olivia.

10 thoughts on “Santa Olivia

  1. Brownbetty Brownbetty says:

    The thing about this book isOkay I'm not actually sure what the thing about this book is There's a couple of points where I felt the author was being weird and wrong headed but overall it was so fascinating that I forgave it almost anything I found the book fascinating because it was to me an indictment of the privilege on which the superhero story is constructed Loup Garron has special powers; speed super strength yer basic 'I am an advanced biological construct' lego set But because of the society she's in the most that this affords her is the occasional opportunity to get in one blow which had better be a knockout because she won't get a chance for a second She's a woman and a child and a latina in a town run by the United States army and local mob There is no 'with great power comes great responsibility' but rather the message she is given is that the power structures around her will not tolerate her threat to the established order and she had by god better be carefulThis is not what I expected from Carey an author I otherwise associate with the kinktastic It seems to me an incredibly female take on the 'superhero' and the result is so different that it doesn't even resemble a superhero narrative although characters within the book allude to the concept There are no clearly defined villains and no 'victim' to be saved if there is any wronged party seeking redress it is Loup's entire community and if there is heroism it is likewise corporateOne specific point of Loup's mutation is that she doesn't experience fear In another book this would be treated with a sort of muscle flexing aggression but in this book Loup is told from earliest childhood that her lack of fear is a danger to her causing her to take risks she wouldn't otherwise and urged to learn the caution others have instinctively However on an extra textual level it seems to me that Loup's fearlessness could be another extremely female super power given the ways in which women are regulated by fearAlthough this is not in the vein of Carey's um BDSM tastic works it has uite interesting sexual politics Loup's mother engaged in something like prostitution as do most of the women in her community on some level and this is treated as part of the economy and neither stigmatized nor eroticized Several of the characters who constitute the strongest voice of moral authority are implied to be part of a poly fidelious relationship And Loup herself although not uite human enough to be a lesbian has a girlfriendOkay now to deal with what's obvious to any French speakers in the audience Loup understands herself to be a werewolf although not in any mythological sense and her name Loup Garron is a pun on the French for werewolf loup garou Her father the source of her difference reuested that her mother name her that because he thought naming her Wolfy McWolferson would be a good way for her to go undetected Also and maybe my understanding of Spanish morphemes is shaky but although people ask if Loup pronounced Lu is short for Lucinda no one ever calls her Lupita which seems like the blindingly obvious name for her if she's not going to go around telling people her name is 'Wolf'This is a highly readable book that is cynical about power structures but not people

  2. Amanda Amanda says:

    The town of Santa Olivia lies between the US and Mexican border but becomes a sort of present day leper colony when it is walled off from the rest of the world Apparently the epicenter of a particularly nasty flu virus the U S military builds a base there so the soldiers can keep the townspeople in line And as governments are wont to do it decides Hey while we have this super secret base cut off from the rest of the world how's about we take the opportunity for a little genetic experimentation? Maybe splice some animal DNA into human DNA and create a super soldier? Anyone have any wolf DNA lying about? Which is all fine and dandy until your super soldier escapes impregnates a local waitress and hightails it for Mexico after the townspeople turn against him And so Loup Garron is born a child with super strength and an inability to feel fear Following Loup throughout her childhood and teenage years we witness as she deals with the deaths of loved ones bands together with others in her orphanage to create miracles and punishments in the name of the town's patron saint grapples with her identity and her sexuality and enters into a military sanctioned boxing match as a means of avenging her brother's death To have focused on any one of these stories might have made for a cohesive if not satisfying narrative but as it is the plot structure seems clunky and jumps from one idea to the next It doesn't help that through it all Loup doesn't seem to feel much of anything or develop a personality beyond gee I feel different from everyone else The climax of the book leads to the aforementioned boxing match which lacks any real sense of tension or dramaI've seen summaries of Santa Olivia that claim it gives a new and intriguing slant to both the werewolf mythos and to the superhero concept Except for it doesn't Because really it's not about werewolves or about superheroes The whole wolf DNA angle is basically irrelevant; the only wolfy characteristics exhibited by Loup are her super strength and stamina a keen sense of hearing an increased appetite and some poorly executed idea about her mating for life Any animal could have been selected for the same traits there's no real reason as to why it had to be a wolf In terms of her superhero abilities see the list provided above Not exactly thrilling stuff She's no Wolverine although one of the orphans compares her to him Here she is blessed with the strength of the big bad wolf so what's she going to do? She's going to box her heart out baby This failed to blow my house down There were some intriguing ideas here whose executions fell flat but I did appreciate the inclusion of a strong lesbian character However even that feels a little disingenuous in that it seems to exist only as a means of reinforcing the idea that Loup never fits in in case it's not really coming across that she's different During her sexual experimentation with boys the boys always reject her saying that she just feels different when they kiss her or that sex with her is like putting a penis in a vise It's almost as if seeking out another female is her only option although it's later connected to the whole tendency to have only one mate idea I would have preferred it if her attraction to women had been separated from this strange connection to her lupine heritageOverall I feel this is the type of book that was born out of a tongue in cheek conceit Hey what if I named the main character Loup Garron? Get it? Like loup garou? As in werewolf? Why aren't you 'howling' with laughter? Also I'm pissed about that cover Because that cover has nothing to do with the bookCross posted at This Insignificant Cinder

  3. Lex Kent Lex Kent says:

    This is a really great book I loved it Really well written and engaging story line If you like stories with a dystopian feel where the world is different due to war and disease Don't pass this one up The main character is likable and even though she doesn't have many of the same feeling we do she's written well enough that you feel for her and root for her to succeed I know the second book didn't get as good of reviews people says its a bit mushy between Loup and Pillar but I'm looking forward to reading about them being happy and in loveDon't miss this one it's too good not to read

  4. Stacia (the 2010 club) Stacia (the 2010 club) says:

    It's raining snakes hallelujah? Snakes fell like rain twisting in midair It's probably wrong that this is the second Snakes on a Plane thought I've had in weeks be glad I didn't post the pic of snakes falling from the plane but when I think of falling snakes it's either that or Indiana JonesI am review lazy this week so I'll give a fast run down of why I REALLY liked Santa Olivia The story was dark It was strangely apocalyptic andor screwy militant who knows what in form I don't fully understand how death disease grudge match boxing sinful clergymen and mutated people with wolf genes all work together to make a cohesive story but somehow it does workThe characters were not typical The first main character was a sexually charged female who took to an inexperienced male The second main character was a young woman who struggled to feel fear anxiety or even a sense of danger due to her genetic coding The emotional connections were off the charts I love when a story is about so much than just a romance The relationship between mother and child brother and sister and two fellow orphans becoming lovers were all of eual importance I GOT SUPER EMOTIONAL FEELS TWICE OR THREE TIMES MAYBE EVEN FOUR TIMES The setting felt like another character I pictured the church yard and the statue of Santa Olivia in my mind I was nervous when Loup was in places she shouldn't be hanging around because I could practically see the danger lurking in every corner I'd highly recommend this book for fans of darker uniue or emotional stories For an Urban Fantasy it was less about ass kicking or bizarre non humans and about survival and tackling hardships I loved the everyday struggle of the characters fighting to survive There is a ff romance but for those unsure if they'd enjoy reading a non mf or mm I'd say to give the book a chance because it was handled beautifully and tastefully The slow build eventually burned into something lovely to witnessHighly recommended Hear hear Sister Martha hoisted her water glass Let the rigid stick of self righteousness be dislodged from her very uptight assFather Ramon coughed A fucking men

  5. Tamora Pierce Tamora Pierce says:

    This is a science fiction novel from Carey about the daughter about a genetically engineered soldier who escapes the lab and passes through a border zone created between the US and Mexico in the wake of a plague that came up from Mexico I wonder how Carey feels now since the copyright date is April 2009 the same month reports of H1N1 virus became news which means that Carey would have handed the manuscript in a year earlier Loup is born to her single mother when her father is forced to move on and raised as much by her half brother Tom a kind and cheerful boy who does his best to keep his promise to Loup's father to teach her to hide the characteristics that mark her as other She is fast with a higher body mass and tolerance to pain and she does not know fear It's Tom who first takes her into the town's boxing ring where he trains to fight in the soldiers vs locals boxing game that promises the local who defeats a soldier two tickets to America When their mother dies Loup is raised by the town's priest and nun along with other orphans They discover what she can do and it is they that concoct the incidents that earn Loup the name of Santa Olivia after the town's patron saint But it isn't until Loup loses yet another person who is vital to her that she is driven to find out just how much punishment her body can take and dish outI didn't mark this one as adult or ya because except for the language and sexual lives of Loup and her friends it could be a ya And if it were the real world and instead of a novel with the language and sexual lives of these kids going from pre teen to mid teens for Loup it would be a ya It's a durn good read from an extraordinarily talented author

  6. Laura Laura says:

    5 awesome vigilante starsI wonder how many of the negative reviews for this book are based on the fact that being a Jacueline Carey book people automatically expect Kushiel styleWell this is definitely not Kushiel style It doesn't even resemble it It is a totally different type of story written in an absolutely different manner And I absolutely LOVED ITIt's a light and engaging read about an unlikely heroine born in an isolated military buffer zone between Mexico and the US She is the daughter of a man genetically manipulated by the government to be a weapon A Wolf Man he was engineered to have superhuman strength speed stamina and senses as well as a total lack of fear Named for her vanished father Loup Garron has inherited his giftsFrustrated by the injustices visited upon her friends and neighbors by the military occupiers Loup is determined to avenge her community Aided by a handful of her fellow orphans Loup takes on the guise of their patron saint Santa Olivia and sets out to deliver vigilante justice from the back coverIf you're looking for a deeper meaning in this book you're not gonna find it There is no other deep buried secret or world wide conspiracy It's just the story of a little girl who is born different and tries to find her place in a society who is either afraid of or in awe of her powers We accompany her through her struggles to always be careful and not show how different she is and through sorrow and happiness on a self imposed journey for vengeance and justiceAnd we do it from the very beginning with a smile on our lips because I'll bet you you're gonna laugh at hearing a priest and a sister's unholy opinion about God's way with his people or at seeing a few little orphans trashing a gang of thugs And don't even let me get started with vengeance given after the measure of a child's sense of justice They can be pretty imaginative about it Father Ramon's mouth twitched let us pray that for the sake of her children Celia O'Brien will take the lesson to heart and cease to begrudge our charityHear hear Sister Martha hoisted her water glass Let the rigid stick of self righteousness be dislodged from her very uptight assFather Ramon coughedWouldn't you also cough in his place at hearing this particular prayer from the lips of a holy sister? D The second half of the book gets serious and as the fun part becomes less the action picks up and grabs you I didn't want to stop reading till the very last page Don't start this expecting science and philosophy Go into it expecting to relax and have a good time and you won't be disappointedHappy reading Check out this review and on my book review and cover art blog The Magic Book Corner

  7. Felicia Felicia says:

    I LOVE this author That said it isn't my favorite of hers but it was very enjoyable I think the world was a bit confusing for me I felt like the environment that the story was set in was kind of hard to grasp The characters were interesting but the world was not enjoyable to be in as others That said it sets up a GREAT seuel so I can't wait to read it like everything else by Ms Carey Huge fan

  8. Duffy Pratt Duffy Pratt says:

    This is your basic dystopian boxing fable with a mutant lesbian werewolf superherosaint as the main character I know that sounds completely ludicrous But Carey makes it work rather well and the book was just a pleasure to read She writes with such ease and clarity here And I really liked several of the characters here I also especially liked how she dealt with a main character who was simply incapable of feeling fear or any of its related emotions She treats it basically as another form of Hansen's Desease leprosy a debility that reuires much extra care and thoughtThe book bases itself on some extrapolations from current US policies The main town is an area completely controlled by the US but not actually part of the US any Thus the army has complete control over the area and law is pretty much whatever the commanders decide This situation I think derives from the legal status that the government has asserted over Guantanamo Bay The similarity becomes even clear during some enhanced interrogation scenes Carey melds this idea with the idea of creating a huge wall to keep Mexicans from immigrating Combine the two and you get a buffer zone like the one that exists in this book The extrapolation is well done and its all too believable But I also think that the direct parallels weaken the fable aspect of the bookThe main reason I haven't given this five stars is because Carey took pains to finish by setting up a seuel rather than coming to a clean and compelling ending for a standalone book This was obviously her plan and she executes it well The book ends very well for the first book of a series But I didn't realize it was going to be a series until I hit the last couple of chapters and as a result I was a little disappointed with the ending After Jordan and Martin I vowed not to start any series until it's been finished Carey works considerably faster than Martin's glacial pace And I'm sure I'll pick up the next installment of this series But I still would rather not have broken my vow especially out of my own ignorance and stupidity

  9. Paul Weimer Paul Weimer says:

    NB I received this as an ARCSanta Olivia is the latest book by Jacueline Carey who is better known for and much better known for the Sundering Duology and much much better known for two Kushiel trilogies While the former is a take on classic fantasy and the latter are milestone in dark sensual fantasy Santa Olivia is a completely different kettle of fishThe press information provided to me describes Santa Olivia as Jacueline Carey's take on comic book superheroes and the classic werewolf myth However what this novel is I think is far nuanced and complex than that simple formulationThe novel centers around Loup Born in a future where a conflict and a disease has created such tensions between Mexico and the United States that a no man's land has sprung up between the two nations Loup lives in the abject poverty and virtual prison that makes up the titular piece of land controlled by the US Military Born of a genetically engineered father and a local for a mother we follow Loup's life from living with her mother and older half brother to her life as an orphan in the local church when she loses both of them Loup has a hard life in a hardscrabble world but she does have her secret the genetic heritage of her father Her father's special gifts of strength fearlessness paranormal senses and speed have been fully inherited in Loup What first starts as a secret to be held tightly for fear of discovery by the military turns into a opportunity to exact justice and later still an opportunity to escapeWhile Loup does take up the mantle of a disguised superhero and hints and nuances including the very name given to her suggest werewolves as an inspiration for the genetic manipulations which inadvertently created Loup this novel is much than a novel about a werewolf powered comic book superhero Carey's interest in Christian saints and iconography get play here in the identity that Loup takes in her retributive acts the titular saint of the compound Santa Olivia The novel runs from before her birth to her ultimate escape and freedom and so we follow her as she grows up grows into her abilities and learns to use them as a symbol of hope and strength for herself and for the people around her that she touches There is a love story in the novel as well and while the love story itself follows a relatively familiar pattern the identities of the participants and the development of the characters give it its own uniue stampI don't think that the novel uite works as well as I had hoped There are an awful lot of loose ends left unanswered by the denouement not ones that really would be answered in a seuel either It's difficult to do near future worldbuilding well as any of the top lights in science fiction can tell you; Carey's worldbuilding is much assured in her other novels than here I never really bought the Macguffin that the head of the camp holds as a potential means of escape although I recognize its dramatic necessity as a device to propel the characters Loup included a chimerical banner to chase after I was also surprised at first at the coarseness of language of the characters of all ages It took a shift of perception on my part to go from the beauty of courtly language in Terre D'Ange to the salty expletive filled language of the residents of Santa Olivia Overall though on the balance I am happy that Carey wrote the novel Not only on its merits which upon reflection do outweigh its drawbacks but because I am a firm believer in author diversification I don't want Carey to write only endless Kushiel novels just like I don't want Stross to only write Merchant Prince novels I want authors that I like and Carey certainly has her place in there to do well but I'd rather not have them turn into one series wonders with each successive volume in the series groaning under the weight of the previous ones Writing different things I think is a good way for an author to remain fresh inventive and keep me coming back for So if you come to this novel hoping for a rocking comic book superhero who changes into a werewolf at night you are going to be very very disappointed This is really a novel about a little girl born in a cage who grows learns to love and learns to be free And in the process she learns to be an inspiration for all of those around her

  10. notyourmonkey notyourmonkey says:

    This is the post apocalyptic gay superhero with soulbonds underdog sports story OF MY HEART While uality may vacillate between three and four stars it's like at least a six on my enjoyment scale You got your apocalypse in my scrappy kids working together novel You got your gay soul bonds in my underdog boxing tournament story Ignore the description on the back; it's dumb This is like Annie crossed with X Men crossed with Escape from New York crossed with Rocky crossed with the as yet unmade soulbond lesbian adventure movie with a happy ending that is awesome

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