This short novella consists of a collection of 14 stories that are interconnected by the same protagonist, Esperanza, and the secondary characters, who are significant friends or family members. The novel is set in northern Colorado, though it includes a variety of settings which include New Mexico, Mexico, Paris, Vietnam, and California. Each of the stories focuses on different themes ranging from racism, love, aging, sexual abuse and feminism. A major theme is Vietnam since the protagonist’s brother is killed in this tragic war. Moreover, the novel includes a series of Vietnam letters. Magical realism abounds in this collection—tears become rivers (water is a key motif symbolizing hope), a magical vine helps an elderly lady disappear into the sky, the Green House where the protagonist lived becomes Noah’s arc and rats, which appear in “Guernica,” become Esperanza’s constant companions.