A Shot in the Cathedral

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Arte Publico Press, Jan 1, 1996 - Fiction - 215 pages
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When Rogelio Villaverde finds himself destitute and desperate for employment, he leaps at the chance for work with The Tribune, a small newspaper in San Salvador. The jumbled pieces of his life begin to fall neatly into place with his new job, a new love interest - Lourdes, a new lease on life. But the recent military coup d'etat brings curfews and martial law. Rogelio's work with the newspaper plunges him into the political melee. He is forced to discard his political ambivalence and take a position. He can no longer remain indifferent in the face of the chaos that has overtaken the lives of everyone around him. His anti-government sentiments peak with the assassination of Archbishop Romero and the aftermath, when soldiers opened fire on the throngs of mourners. Rogelio's first instinct is to escape the madness and accompany his boss and friend into exile. But destiny takes another radical twist, and chilling events seal Rogelio's fate. He is compelled to remain and join the struggle for justice and freedom in his homeland.

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About the author (1996)

Mario Bencastro is the author of numerous award-winning and critically-acclaimed works that explore the impact of civil war and the lives of Central American immigrants in the United States. His first novel, A Shot in the Cathedral (Arte Publico Press, 1996), a finalist in the International Diana y Novedades Literary Prize (Mexico), and his short story collection, The Tree of Life: Stories of the Civil War (Arte Publico Press, 1997) focus on civil war in El Salvador. In Odyssey to the North (Arte Publico Press, 1998) he turns his attention north of the border as his characters seek a better life in the United States. Bencastro's work has been published in El Salvador, Mexico, Haiti, India, Canada and the U.S. He lives and works in the Washington D.C. area.

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