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Camila Cabello celebrates her grandmother’s novel and strength

Málaga, Spain — Camila Cabello credits the strong women in her life for her success as an artist and as a person. So it was only natural that she was there to celebrate her grandmother’s milestone – the publication of a novel.

The Spanish-language book Los boleros que he Vivido (The Boleros I Lived) was a decades-long dream project of Cabello’s grandmother Mercedes Rodriguez.

The “Havana” singer traveled to Malaga, Spain last week to celebrate and promote Rodriguez’s book, which tells the story of a woman who separates from her husband after many years of marriage. The 329-page story weaves through the woman’s efforts to reunite her daughter and granddaughters in the United States – a story that reflects events in the lives of Cabello’s family.

“In the end, I finished it very quickly, really, really quickly because it’s the story of my life and I still have a good memory,” Rodriguez said.

As Rodriguez, 75, discussed the novel, Cabello held her hand. “My family is such a big part of who I am, it’s such a big part of who I am as an artist, it’s such a big part of my music,” Cabello said.

Music is like a character throughout the novel – each chapter is named after a bolero, the musical genre of romantic lyrics that originated in Cuba and became very popular throughout Latin America in the first half of the 20th century. For Rodriguez, music is essential: “It’s something that no one can stop living with to be happy,” she said.

Speaking of her granddaughter’s success, Rodriguez said: “It’s in her blood, she has photos at the age of 2 with a microphone in her hand and with the radio on.

“I hear her singing at a concert, for example, and I even get short of breath, it excites me so much, I just can’t explain it to you,” she said. “I’ve never felt anything like this in my life. to see her singing on stage or to hear her record.”

Rodriguez’s favorite Cabello song, “Never Be the Same,” evokes intense emotions. “I can’t hear it because I’m making a fool of myself, I start crying right away,” she said.

Other family favorites include music from her native Cuba, as well as Latin American pop stars like Alejandro Sanz or Luis Miguel, and a superstar favorite of Cabello’s grandmother, Ed Sheeran.

Cabello said she felt a special bond with the women in her family, a line that stretches back to her grandmother’s grandmother, who Rodriguez called Isabelita.

“I feel like I wouldn’t be where I am today if my family didn’t have such strong women. All women who had strong personalities and did things their way,” she said, citing how her great-great-grandmother “was really thinking ahead of her time in terms of sexuality and relationships.” (Cabello notes that it’s a theme her grandmother explores in Los boleros que he Vivido.)

“My mom was always like that, she,” Cabello said, referring to Rodriguez, “was always like that, my sister, who’s 15, is like that too. Very independent thinkers.”

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