Skip to main content


Grove Press

“You just want to go deep enough to arrive at that moment when your thoughts stop 
and all you feel is the water and your heartbeat.”

THE VEINS OF THE OCEAN is not a novel that is easy to put down or to forget once finished. Both a tragedy and a romance, Patricia Engel’s second novel stuns and warms the reader in equal measure.

From Florida to Cuba to Colombia, our heroine – and the reader! – are taken on a hard journey to solace and redemption. This is a deep novel with lots of under currents, and just like the swimmer who sheds her clothing in preparation of jumping into the water, so does our heroine shed her past and her guilt, and dives into the ocean to cleanse her soul and spring forth reborn and renewed.

SUMMARY:  For seven years, Reina Castillo visits her brother Carlito on death row for throwing his unfaithful girlfriend’s daughter off a bridge.  History had repeated itself, because the same thing had happened to Carlito when he was a child, but he lived. When her brother commits suicide after receiving a life sentence, Reina escapes to Florida hoping to forget and be forgotten. There she meets Nesto Cadena, a Cuban refugee who misses the children he left behind. Together the lovers learn to shed their guilt and find solace in the beauty and power of the ocean, and in each other.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  Patricia Engel is the author of THE VEINS OF THE OCEAN, which was named a New York Times Editors’ Choice. Her other novels include, VIDA and IT’S NOT LOVE, IT’S JUST PARIS. Patricia’s novels have won numerous awards including the New York Public Library Young Lions Fiction Award, Best Book of the Year by NPR, Independent Publisher Book Award and International Latino Book Award.  Born to Colombian parents and raised in New Jersey, Patricia currently lives in Miami. Learn more about her at