Places Left Unfinished at the Time of Creation by John Phillip Santos

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Synopsis

Finalist for the National Book Award!In this beautifully wrought memoir, award-winning writer John Philip Santos weaves together dream fragments, family remembrances, and Chicano mythology, reaching back into time and place to blend the story of one Mexican family with the soul of an entire people. The story unfolds through a pageant of unforgettable family figures: from Madrina--touched with epilepsy and prophecy ever since, as a girl, she saw a dying soul leave its body--to Teofilo, who was kidnapped as an infant and raised by the Kikapu Indians of Northern Mexico. At the heart of the book is Santos' search for the meaning of his grandfather's suicide in San Antonio, Texas, in 1939. Part treasury of the elders, part elegy, part personal odyssey, this is an immigration tale and a haunting family story that offers a rich, magical view of Mexican-American culture.
 

About John Phillip Santos

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John Phillip Santos, born and raised in San Antonio, Texas, is the first Mexican American Rhodes Scholar whose awards include the Academy of American Poets' Prize at Notre Dame and the Oxford Prize for fiction. His articles on Latino culture have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, and the San Antonio Express-News. Writer and producer of more than forty television documentaries for CBS-TV and PBS-TV, two of them Emmy nominees, he lives in New York City.
 
Published August 1, 2000 by Penguin Books. 320 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction

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“We may be latter-day Mexicanos,” he writes, “transplanted into another millennium in el Norte, but we are still connected to the old story, aren—t we?” Answering his own question, he continues, that connection is rapidly dying with the loss of the old generation, and with what he considers to be...

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Mexico was always an empire of forgetting, writes Santos in his elegantly crafted chronicle of one of the thousands of Mexican families who fled to El Norte during the Mexican Revolution. An award

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Publishers Weekly

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Combining traditional memoir, ancient Mexican history and beliefs, personal sacramental journeys and ghostly interviews, Santos gallops across the desert mountains of Coahuila through a flood of migrating Monarch butterflies, recalls long-ago predawn breakfast rituals in a Mexican village and fli...

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