On the morning of his 40th birthday, anthropology professor Jackson Jones contemplates his future: Should he go back to Africa, where he did his fieldwork, and live with the Mbuti, or should he marry and settle down in the Midwest, where he now teaches? On the morning of her release from prison, Sunny, who grew up in a snake-handling church in the Little Egypt region of Southern Illinois, rents a garage apartment from Jackson. They become lovers, but they're pulled in different directions.
The Pulitzer Prize-winning The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love is a contemporary American classic, a book that still captivates and inspires readers 20 years after its first publication. Now, in Beautiful María of My Soul, Oscar Hijuelos returns to this indelible story, to tell it from the point of view of its beloved heroine, María.
"So this is the Real Maria"
Patty and Walter Berglund were the new pioneers of old St. Paul - the gentrifiers, the hands-on parents, the Whole Foods generation. Patty was the ideal sort of neighbor, who could tell you where to recycle your batteries and how to get the local cops to do their job. She was an enviably perfect mother and the wife of Walter's dreams. Together with Walter - environmental lawyer, commuter cyclist, total family man - she was doing her small part to build a better world.
"Enjoyable book. Really liked the narration."
At its heart lies the marriage of Peter and Maureen Tarnopol, a gifted young writer and the woman who wants to be his muse but who instead is his nemesis. Their union is based on fraud and shored up by moral blackmail, but it is so perversely durable that, long after Maureen’s death, Peter is still trying—and failing—to write his way free of it.
"Disapointing read unfortunately"
In 1799, the artificial island of Dejima lies in Nagasaki Harbor as Japan’s outpost for the Dutch East Indies Company. There, Jacob de Zoet has come to make a fortune large enough to return to Holland and marry the woman he loves.
"Less about the arrival more about the ride"