Friday, May 10, 2013


After struggling through Laura Restrepo's story of madness and the drug trade in Colombia I decided a change of pace was in order.  So, I'm reading Carmen Martín Gaite.

Caperucita en Manhattan is a Little Red Riding Hood update.  The first half of the story has little obvious relation to the fable, being instead a rather hard-nosed look from the viewpoint of a young child at inadequate parenting.  The language is very straight-forward and accessible to about any aged reader.  The second part of the book is more of a playful fantasy; the whole thing is a delightful read.  I'll be done with the book in a couple days, but I also have La Reina de las Nieves ready to go.

Carmen Martín Gaite was a unique personality who wrote many fine books; I'm sorry I did not become aware of her work before she died not very long ago.  She was one of that generation of Spanish women writers like Matute and Laforet who were able to slip under the radar of Franco's censors to produce great literature during Spain's nightmarish post-war years.

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