The Feast of the Goat

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9780571288625: The Feast of the Goat

Haunted all her life by feelings of terror and emptiness, forty-nine-year-old Urania Cabral returns to her native Dominican Republic - and finds herself reliving the events of l961, when the capital was still called Trujillo City and one old man terrorized a nation of three million. Rafael Trujillo, the depraved ailing dictator whom Dominicans call the Goat, controls his inner circle with a combination of violence and blackmail. In Trujillo's gaudy palace, treachery and cowardice have become a way of life. But Trujillo's grasp is slipping. There is a conspiracy against him, and a Machiavellian revolution already underway that will have bloody consequences of its own. In this 'masterpiece of Latin American and world literature, and one of the finest political novels ever written' (Bookforum), Mario Vargas Llosa recounts the end of a regime and the birth of a terrible democracy, giving voice to the historical Trujillo and the victims, both innocent and complicit, drawn into his deadly orbit.

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Review:

Mario Vargas Llosa, a former candidate for the presidency of Peru, is better placed than most novelists to write about the machinations of Latin American politics. In The Feast of the Goat he offers a vivid re-creation of the Dominican Republic during the final days of General Rafael Trujillo's insidious and evil regime. Told from several viewpoints, the book has three distinctive, alternating strands. There is Urania Cabral, the daughter of Trujillo's disgraced secretary of state, who has returned to Santo Domingo after more than 30 years. Now a successful New York lawyer, Urania has never forgiven her aging and paralyzed father, Agustín, for literally sacrificing her to the carnal despot in the hope of regaining his political post. Flipping back to May of 1961, there is a group of assassins, all equally scarred by Trujillo, waiting to gun the Generalissimo down. Finally there is an astonishing portrait of Trujillo--the Goat--and his grotesque coterie. Llosa depicts Trujillo as a villain of Shakespearean proportions. He is a preening, macho dandy who equates his own virility with the nation's health. An admirer of Hitler "not for his ideas but for the way he wore a uniform" (fittingly he equips his secret police force with a fleet of black Volkswagen Beetles), Trujillo even has his own Himler in Colonel Abbes Garcia, a vicious torturer with a predilection for the occult.

As the novel edges toward Trujillo's inevitable murder, Urania's story gets a bit lost in the action; the remaining narratives however, are rarely short of mesmerizing. Trujillo's death unleashes a new order, but not the one expected by the conspirators. Enslaved by the soul of the dead chief, neither they nor the Trujillo family--who embark on a hideous spree of bloody reprisals--are able to fill the void. Llosa has them all skillfully outmaneuvered by the puppet-president Joaquín Belaguer, a former poet who is the very antithesis of the machismo Goat. Savage, touching, and bleakly funny, this compelling book gives an all too human face to one of Latin America's most destructive tyrants. --Travis Elborough, Amazon.co.uk

About the Author:

MARIO VARGAS LLOSA was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2010 “for his cartography of structures of power and his trenchant images of the individual’s resistance, revolt, and defeat.” Peru’s foremost writer, he has been awarded the Cervantes Prize, the Spanish-speaking world’s most distinguished literary honor, and the Jerusalem Prize. His many works include The Feast of the Goat, The Bad Girl, Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter, The War of the End of the World, and The Storyteller. He lives in London.

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Mario Vargas Llosa
Editorial: FABER FABER, United Kingdom (2014)
ISBN 10: 0571288626 ISBN 13: 9780571288625
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Descripción FABER FABER, United Kingdom, 2014. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Main.. Language: English . Brand New Book. The Feast of the Goat will stand out as the great emblematic novel of Latin America s twentieth century and removes One Hundred Years of Solitude of that title. (Times Literary Supplement). Urania Cabral, a New York lawyer, returns to the Dominican Republic after a lifelong self-imposed exile. Once she is back in her homeland, the elusive feeling of terror that has overshadowed her whole life suddenly takes shape. Urania s own story alternates with the powerful climax of dictator Rafael Trujillo s reign. In 1961, Trujillo s decadent inner circle (which includes Urania s soon-to-be disgraced father) enjoys the luxuries of privilege while the rest of the nation lives in fear and deprivation. As Trujillo clings to power, a plot to push the Dominican Republic into the future is being formed. But after the murder of its hated dictator, the Goat, is carried out, the Dominican Republic is plunged into the nightmare of a bloody and uncertain aftermath. Now, thirty years later, Urania reveals how her own family was fatally wounded by the forces of history. In The Feast of the Goat, Mario Vargas Llosa eloquently explores the effects of power and violence on the lives of both the oppressors and those they victimized. Nº de ref. de la librería AA99780571288625

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Descripción FABER FABER, United Kingdom, 2014. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Main.. Language: English . Brand New Book. The Feast of the Goat will stand out as the great emblematic novel of Latin America s twentieth century and removes One Hundred Years of Solitude of that title. (Times Literary Supplement). Urania Cabral, a New York lawyer, returns to the Dominican Republic after a lifelong self-imposed exile. Once she is back in her homeland, the elusive feeling of terror that has overshadowed her whole life suddenly takes shape. Urania s own story alternates with the powerful climax of dictator Rafael Trujillo s reign. In 1961, Trujillo s decadent inner circle (which includes Urania s soon-to-be disgraced father) enjoys the luxuries of privilege while the rest of the nation lives in fear and deprivation. As Trujillo clings to power, a plot to push the Dominican Republic into the future is being formed. But after the murder of its hated dictator, the Goat, is carried out, the Dominican Republic is plunged into the nightmare of a bloody and uncertain aftermath. Now, thirty years later, Urania reveals how her own family was fatally wounded by the forces of history. In The Feast of the Goat, Mario Vargas Llosa eloquently explores the effects of power and violence on the lives of both the oppressors and those they victimized. Nº de ref. de la librería AA99780571288625

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