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Exploration: Latin American Challenge Wrap Up

May 23, 2009

The lovely Katrina hosted this challenge, which called on participants to read four books by Latin American authors in four months. I scrambled to finish this one, reading my fourth book late into the night on April 30th, but in the end I managed it.

Books read (linked through to reviews):
Gabriela, Clove and Cinnamon by Jorge Amado
The Hummingbird’s Daughter by Luis Alberto Urrea (I can’t believe I haven’t reviewed this one; it was magical and epic and swept me off my feet and everyone should go read it.)
The Bad Girl by Mario Vargos Llosa
Portrait in Sepia by Isabel Allende

The best book: The Hummingbird’s Daughter…but Portrait in Sepia gave it a good run for its money.
Any new authors? Llosa and Urrea. I’m now in love with Urrea.
Books I did not finish: None! But neither The Bad Girl or Portrait in Sepia were in my original pool
What did I learn from this challenge? Well, I’m glad I gave Amado a second shot. I didn’t love my first experience with him, but after Gabriela I’ll be reading more! And I had Allende confirmed as a writer I can depend on to deliver a delicious story. And of course, I learned I have a huge crush on Urrea and his amazing, amazing writing abilities. I mentioned in my Japanese Lit Challenge wrap up that even though all of the books were very different, they had a certain feel to them. I think it’s safe to say that Latin American writers have a definite tone as well; all of the stories had aspects of surrealism to them which I really enjoyed. All in all, a fun challenge!

9 Comments leave one →
  1. May 23, 2009 11:35 am

    Congratulations on finishing the challenge!

  2. May 24, 2009 5:09 am

    Great job, Eva! It makes me so sad that I didn’t get to a single book for that challenge, not a single one. And I really, really did want to!

  3. May 24, 2009 6:45 am

    Looks like you read some great books, just added Urrea to my bookmooch wishlist, I’ve never heard of him

  4. May 24, 2009 8:11 am

    I’m glad you enjoyed the challenge. However, it was not my cup of tea.

  5. May 24, 2009 1:25 pm

    BermudaOnion, thanks! :)

    Debi, I’m sure you will one day. :D

    Katrina, Urrea’s Mexican-he just came out with a new book.

    Violette, thanks! Do you not enjoy Latin American writing?

  6. May 25, 2009 1:35 pm

    I have the Hummingbird’s Daughter, but never got into it. I’ll have to give it another shot!

  7. May 26, 2009 2:02 pm

    Good work! I love Allende, but haven’t read Portraits. Sounds good!

  8. May 26, 2009 7:03 pm

    I love Isabel Allende, she’s a fabulous writer!
    Congrats on finishing this Challenge, I might organize a similar one later on, I’m Argentinian and I wanted to spread the latin love!

  9. June 15, 2009 2:29 pm

    I just want to say that Urrea was the visiting lecture to our literature department banquet this year and after reading “The Devil’s Highway’ – which is all about relations and the violence along the US/Mexico border – I have to say that he’s just as wonderful in person as he is in his writing! Just thought I’d let you know to go ahead and crush away!

Thank you for commenting! For a long while, my health precluded me replying to everyone. Yet I missed the conversation, so I'm now making an effort to reply again. It might take a few days though, and there will be times when I simply can't. Regardless, I always read and value what you say.

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