I love a good rags to riches story, and The Barefoot Queen by Ildefonso Falcones was an excellent one, although it was hard to read at times. Surrounding the life of a slave named Caridad who was torn away from her mother as a child, then torn away from her son to travel with her master from Cuba to Seville. When her master dies at sea, she is left to her own devices, a free woman, which is super terrifying as she knows no one. She is taken under the wing of Melchor, a leader in the gypsy community, where she will be safe, or so she thinks. This is 18th century Spain after all, the abuse of woman was common, and it was a harsh time for gypsies in general. Falcones didn't hold anything back, describing the horrid and the happy, the injustice and the love with the same enthusiasm. If you can stomach it, read it immediately.