The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende
Another whopper of a book for this months book club. But generally well received, some found it gratuitous, some unputdownable. One book club member read us her favourite passage which can be found on Page 323, beginning with ‘Clara was still young…’
Really chuffed with how many people made it along considering the weather that was fore-casted and the bugs that have been going around. It was also lovely to welcome some new faces! As always, I have tried to capture some of the discussion points and suggested further reading, so feel free to join in the conversation in the Comments section below.
Secret, dark core of the Latin psyche.
So much in the book; politics, class, a family saga.
The political crescendo at the end.
Esteban Treubo: emotionally stunted.
Larger than life characters, not necessarily relate-able. Mythical.
Women’s roles in South America at the time (late 1890’s through to 1960’s).
Catholicism and the traditional society.
The fact that the country is never named.
The struggle for power. Venezuela today. Contemporary resonances.
Similar to Gothic novels and Victorian melodrama.
Men like Esteban can be found in Western literature. Very Dickensian.
Last line of the book being the same as the first. Symmetry and the cyclical nature of the story.
Strength of the women in the camp, a ray of light in the dark.
Clara, Blanca and Alba: all names suggest purity, clarity and innocence.
Nine years of muteness! Strength of character.
Suffragettes and corsets. Would like to have heard more of Nivea.
Symbolism and darkness reminded us to Kafka.
- Love in the Time of Cholera, Chronicle of a Death Foretold, Story of a Shipwrecked Sailor and 100 Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
- Maria Marin the play
- Midnights Children and Haroun and the Sea of Stories by Salman Rushdie
Have any of our lovely followers read any other books by Isabel Allende of any other female Latin authors? Would appreciate any further recommendations!
Our next book club book is Becoming by Michelle Obama, meeting on Tuesday 26th February, 7 – 8.30pm in the Reading Room at Insole Court House.