The Red of His Shadow by Mayra Montero
A Novel

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From one of today's most gifted young Latin American writers, The Red of His Shadow is a breathtaking novel, a contemporary love story with the power of Greek tragedy that takes the reader deep into the mysterious world of Haitian Voudon. It is Holy Week, and the Haitian sugar cane harvesters can temporarily forget their misery and lose themsevles in the fervor of Voudon. But amidst the colorful festival, a struggle for power, as well as a devastating passion, develops between Mistress Zulé, a Voudon priestess and spiritual leader, and the infamous, bloodthirsty Similá Bolosse, a rival Voudon priest backed by the tontons macoutes. Based on true events, The Red of His Shadow evokes ferocious love, intense hatred, and the specter of death looming within life. Written in a prose remarkable for its clarity and musicality, the novel manages to be both richly symbolic and intensely physical. Behind a case that Dominican police closed as a simple "crime of passion" pulses the spell of a war that remains unfinished today.

About Mayra Montero

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Mayra Montero was born in Havana, Cuba, in 1952, but has lived in Puerto Rico since the mid 1960s. She studied journalism in Mexico and Puerto Rico and worked for many years as a correspondent in Central America and the Caribbean. She is presently a highly acclaimed journalist in Puerto Rico and writes a weekly column in El Nuevo Dia newspaper. Montero's first book was a collection of short stories, "Twenty-Three and a Turtle". Her second book, a novel titled "The Braid of the Beautiful Moon", was a finalist for the Herralde awards, one of Europe's most prestigious literary awards. Each of her subsequent books -- "The Last Night I Spent With You", "The Red of His Shadow", "In the Palm of Darkness", and "The Messenger" -- has been published in the United States in translations by Edith Grossman, as well as in several European countries. Her other nonfiction work appears frequently in scholarly and literary publications throughout the world.
Published August 1, 2001 by The Ecco Press / HarperCollins. 159 pages
Genres: Education & Reference, Horror, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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The lush exoticism and sinister supernaturalism of the culture of voudou are evoked in rapturous detail in this unusual novel, the fourth in English translation from the Cuban-born Puerto Rican author (The Last Night I Spent with You, 2000, etc.).

May 20 2010 | Read Full Review of The Red of His Shadow: A Novel

The New York Times

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With this awareness, some of Montero's underlying themes become clearer, allowing the story to be read as a metaphor for the battle between a traditional matriarchal way of life and the new regime of a bloodthirsty male leader intent on creating a drug trafficking empire.

Aug 12 2001 | Read Full Review of The Red of His Shadow: A Novel

Publishers Weekly

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At once a brutal, expressionistic voodoo fairy tale and an indictment of the plight of Haitian cane workers in the Dominican Republic, this demanding novel proves that Montero is capable, like Zulé, of "looking at the sun for a long time, searching with staring eyes for the temporal cause of its ...

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