Found in Translation: The House of Spirits

by Amy Schakel

allende houseofspirits
If you’ve read Isabel Allende’s House of the Spirits you probably remember the opening line, “Barrabas came to us by sea…” It is a line that immediately ensnares and excites the mystery of what is to follow through the book. It follow the lives of three generations of the Trueba family and ultimately the history of a nation–how no matter what, everything seems to come full circle.

When I first read this book I was in high school and I remember loving it. So when I had the opportunity to read it again to include it in this blog series I jumped on the chance. I had forgotten how involved the characters are; how beautiful, strong and ethereal the women are. I had forgotten the men who drift through, drive, define, intersect in alternatively amorous and violent ways with their lives. I had also forgotten how closely connected the characters are to people and events in Allende’s own life which made me go back and do more research of that era (the Pinochet coup).

This is a story for the ages and one that will always hold a place in my heart. I hope it does the same for others.

(Note: this title is also available in Spanish in our store!)

 

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