I Love You, I Need You, I Have To Be With You, I Hate You, I Love You, I Hate You, I Love You Iím Done With You.
Some women live this way all their lives, attached to men who are unavailable (i.e. married) going back and forth for years until moving on to the next one. Denise Chavez tells the story of one of these women, Teresina "Tere" Avila, who is in love with Lucio Valdez, a married man. Back and forth, back and forth; they break up and make up time and time again. Things complicate so much that Tere even loses her job over the affair.
Tere has another love in her life: Pedro Infante, a Mexican film star who allegedlydied in a plane crash in 1957. Much like Elvis, there are Pedro sightings everywhere and many of his fans believe that he is still alive. Tere and her best friend Irma "La Wirms" Granades belong to Pedro Infante Club de Admiradores Norteamericano #256. There they watch Pedro movies, discuss if Pedro is still alive, which of his movies is best and gossip. Tere and Irma take this even further and have private Pedrothans, discussing how Pedroís movies relate to real life and what they learn from each one.
Ms. Chavez shows us the reality of "the other womanís" life. Neither pretty nor glamorous, but filled with sad, pathetic moments waiting and pleading for him to call driving around to catch glimpses of him. Happy, rapturous moments when things go your way and you want them to go on forever. Sinfully orgasmic moments sneaked out at the No Tell Motel. Like so many other women who are in love with being in love, Tere is so busy loving instead of living that she almost misses the point of everything that is anything and a chance at a good man.
Loving Pedro Infante is sad, revealing and inspiring. The fantastic plot reads like a diary rather than the imagination of a New Mexico writer. The writing drifts between the goings on of Tereís world and her maturing thoughts, with excerpts of Pedro Infanteís life showing how he lived and was loved.
Loving Pedro Infante should be read with an open mind and heart while testing your compassion and intelligence, shining a light on a bit of the nastiness that occurs at night. The most important lesson the book teaches anyone is to count the cost of loving versus being in love. Not much of a difference, but one that means either happiness or despair.