The palace of the white skunks

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Viking, 1990 - Fiction - 356 pages
In the wake of Castro's uprising, Fortunato leaves his ruined village in search of a better life only to become caught up in the bitter fires of revolution

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The palace of the white skunks

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This semi-autobiographical tale by an author expelled from Cuba a decade ago takes up where Singing in the Well ( LJ 7/87) left off. Fortunato, now an adolescent living in a household of loud and ... Read full review


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About the author (1990)

The novel The Ill-fated Peregrinations of Fray Servando recreates in a poetic style, in which time, space, and character move on multiple planes of fantasy and reality, the life of Fray Servando Teresa de Mier, a Mexican priest famous for his hatred of the Spaniards. Mier denied even that the Spaniards had brought Christianity to the New World. Arenas begins with a letter to the friar: "Ever since I discovered you in an execrable history of Spanish literature, described as the friar who had traveled over the whole of Europe on foot having improbable adventures; I have tried to find out more about you." In a meditation on the nature of fiction, Arenas discovers that he and Servando are the same person, and author and character become one.

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