But then she meets Ignacio, her holiday romance. Ignacio thinks she is beautiful. He wants to kiss her over and over again. And a strange thing happens to June. She starts losing weight – a lot of weight. Could Ignacio be THE MANTEQUERO?
Mantequero was a short story and when I got to the end I said to myself, “That’s it?” I wanted more. Before reading the story, I had no idea what a mantequero was. There’s an old Spanish legend about a monster that looks like a man who eats the fat of humans. I learned he’s called a sacamantecas or mantequero. Although it sounds distasteful, the story’s quite intriguing. Mantequero is a fairytale for adults.
June Blacker is an overweight school teacher who never married. Her sisters are trim, married and expect her to watch their children and take care of their mother. June longs for a different life and decides to rebel one day. Her sisters discuss Christmas plans and she tells them she’ll be on holiday. Since June always does what they say, they are shocked. June quickly makes plans to travel to a tiny Spanish village where she unknowingly meets the handsome Mantequero and invites him home.
I love how the author referred to Weight Watchers and liposuction when discussing losing weight in her story. Many can identify with how hard it is to lose those extra pounds and how it affects their lives. I like that June found the courage to pick up and leave the family behind for the holiday. She travelled by herself to another country and was determined to learn more about the culture. She had no clue what was happening to her after meeting the handsome stranger, yet had no desire to really find out. June may have found happiness in a strange sort of way, but it was happiness none the less.