Monique Quintana - Cenote City

Monique Quintana - Cenote City


“Monique Quintana has manifested a colorful, strange, and enchanting alchemy within the borders of Cenote City. Cenote City is cinematic, tender, and a ravishing read. This novella is vibrant, fun, and at times, heart-breaking. Quintana has written a gothic fairytale for Brown girls everywhere with an unapologetic booming heart.”

-Rios de la Luz, author of Itzá & The Pulse Between the Dimensions and the Desert

“Monique Quintana masterfully weaves everyday, ordinary experiences with reverence and wonder. She reminds us that there is magic in the world, and most importantly within ourselves. Cenote City provides a much needed balm for the pain and disillusionment we often feel about the world, as well as a dynamic recognition of our own power.

By tethering the reader to things that are familiar, Quintana is able to create a fantastical world where we can explore subjects that are often uncomfortable or challenging, revealing the liminal spaces in which we exist between life and death, culture and identity, freedom and oppression. Cenote City is a place readers will want to visit again and again.”

Sarah Chavez, executive director of The Order of the Good Death and co-host of the Death in the Afternoon podcast.

Lune’s mother cannot stop crying after all the hospitals shut down. She cries and cries and finally she is exiled to the cenote, where her tears endlessly fill the giant sinkhole. She becomes a big tourist attraction. People come from miles to see Marcrina cry into the cenote—part prisoner, part carnival attraction, part saint, Marcrina’s story is one of heartbreak, love, and endurance. This is the story of Lune, of Marcrina, of Lune’s son Nico, and of a strange place called Cenote City, where the world of magic and the dead entwines with daily life in enchanting and unsettling ways. Monique Quintana’s words will pull you under, down to the depths, where tears flow, hearts break, and dreams are reborn every day.


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