Michael Nava The City of Palaces: A Novel

ISBN 13: 9780299299101

The City of Palaces: A Novel

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9780299299101: The City of Palaces: A Novel
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In the years before the Mexican Revolution, Mexico is ruled by a tiny elite that apes European culture, grows rich from foreign investment, and prizes racial purity. The vast majority of Mexicans, who are native or of mixed native and Spanish blood, are politically powerless and slowly starving to death. Presiding over this corrupt system is Don Porfirio Díaz, the ruthless and inscrutable president of the Republic.

Against this backdrop, The City of Palaces opens in a Mexico City jail with the meeting of Miguel Sarmiento and Alicia Gavilán. Miguel is a principled young doctor, only recently returned from Europe but wracked by guilt for a crime he committed as a medical student ten years earlier. Alicia is the spinster daughter of an aristocratic family. Disfigured by smallpox, she has devoted herself to working with the city’s destitute. This unlikely pair—he a scientist and atheist and she a committed Christian—will marry. Through their eyes and the eyes of their young son, José, readers follow the collapse of the old order and its bloody aftermath.

The City of Palaces is a sweeping novel of interwoven lives: Miguel and Alicia; José, a boy as beautiful and lonely as a child in a fairy tale; the idealistic Francisco Madero, who overthrows Díaz but is nevertheless destroyed by the tyrant’s political system; and Miguel’s cousin Luis, shunned as a “sodomite.” A glittering mosaic of the colonial past and the wealth of the modern age, The City of Palaces is a story of faith and reason, cathedrals and hovels, barefoot street vendors and frock-coated businessmen, grand opera and silent film, presidents and peasants, the living and the dead.

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Review:

"An extraordinary portrait of one of the most critical periods in Mexico's history. Nava breathes life into the stories of political, cultural, and social revolutionaries as they navigate change in their country and within themselves. This is a breakthrough novel."--Rigoberto González, author of Autobiography of My Hungers
"City of Palaces begins as the love story of two good people, a Catholic and an atheist, who find each other in the corrupt world of belle epoch Mexico City. It grows into a magnificent epic about family, politics, art, revolution, and hope. This is a masterly work of old-fashioned storytelling, rich and spacious and moving, a novel that deserves to be compared to The Leopard, Love in the Time of Cholera, and Doctor Zhivago, but with its own intimacy and grandeur. I fell in love with these people and did not want to say goodbye to them."--Christopher Bram, author of Exiles in America
"This first novel in the author's 'Children of Eve' series begins to untangle a tight knot of political and historical intrigue surrounding the Mexican Revolution."--Stanford

About the Author:

Michael Nava is the author of an acclaimed series of seven crime novels featuring Henry Rios, a gay Latino criminal defense lawyer. The series has won six Lambda Literary Awards. In 2001 he received the Bill Whitehead Lifetime Achievement Award in LGBT literature.

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Book Description University of Wisconsin Press, United States, 2014. Hardback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. In the years before the Mexican Revolution, Mexico is ruled by a tiny elite that apes European culture, grows rich from foreign investment, and prizes racial purity. The vast majority of Mexicans, who are native or of mixed native and Spanish blood, are politically powerless and slowly starving to death. Presiding over this corrupt system is Don Porfirio Diaz, the ruthless and inscrutable president of the Republic.Against this backdrop, The City of Palaces opens in a Mexico City jail with the meeting of Miguel Sarmiento and Alicia Gavilan. Miguel is a principled young doctor, only recently returned from Europe but wracked by guilt for a crime he committed as a medical student ten years earlier. Alicia is the spinster daughter of an aristocratic family. Disfigured by smallpox, she has devoted herself to working with the city's destitute. This unlikely pair-he a scientist and atheist and she a committed Christian-will marry. Through their eyes and the eyes of their young son, Jose, readers follow the collapse of the old order and its bloody aftermath.The City of Palaces is a sweeping novel of interwoven lives: Miguel and Alicia; Jose, a boy as beautiful and lonely as a child in a fairy tale; the idealistic Francisco Madero, who overthrows Diaz but is nevertheless destroyed by the tyrant's political system; and Miguel's cousin Luis, shunned as a "sodomite." A glittering mosaic of the colonial past and the wealth of the modern age, The City of Palaces is a story of faith and reason, cathedrals and hovels, barefoot street vendors and frock-coated businessmen, grand opera and silent film, presidents and peasants, the living and the dead. Seller Inventory # APC9780299299101

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Book Description University of Wisconsin Press, United States, 2014. Hardback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. In the years before the Mexican Revolution, Mexico is ruled by a tiny elite that apes European culture, grows rich from foreign investment, and prizes racial purity. The vast majority of Mexicans, who are native or of mixed native and Spanish blood, are politically powerless and slowly starving to death. Presiding over this corrupt system is Don Porfirio Diaz, the ruthless and inscrutable president of the Republic.Against this backdrop, The City of Palaces opens in a Mexico City jail with the meeting of Miguel Sarmiento and Alicia Gavilan. Miguel is a principled young doctor, only recently returned from Europe but wracked by guilt for a crime he committed as a medical student ten years earlier. Alicia is the spinster daughter of an aristocratic family. Disfigured by smallpox, she has devoted herself to working with the city's destitute. This unlikely pair-he a scientist and atheist and she a committed Christian-will marry. Through their eyes and the eyes of their young son, Jose, readers follow the collapse of the old order and its bloody aftermath.The City of Palaces is a sweeping novel of interwoven lives: Miguel and Alicia; Jose, a boy as beautiful and lonely as a child in a fairy tale; the idealistic Francisco Madero, who overthrows Diaz but is nevertheless destroyed by the tyrant's political system; and Miguel's cousin Luis, shunned as a "sodomite." A glittering mosaic of the colonial past and the wealth of the modern age, The City of Palaces is a story of faith and reason, cathedrals and hovels, barefoot street vendors and frock-coated businessmen, grand opera and silent film, presidents and peasants, the living and the dead. Seller Inventory # BTE9780299299101

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