Rebecca Ascher-Walsh
May 30, 2003 AT 04:00 AM EDT

My Invented Country: A Nostalgic Journey Through Chile

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Isabel Allende
publisher
HarperCollins
genre
Nonfiction

We gave it an A

Isabel Allende (”The House of the Spirits”) is that rare writer whose understanding of story matches her mastery of language. One can hardly imagine how glorious this translated remembrance of her childhood home, which includes a clairvoyant grandmother and a relative who wants to be buried standing up so he can look God in the eye, must be in its original Spanish. My Invented Country: A Nostalgic Journey Through Chile is hardly a travelogue of the place she loves but left in the wake of Chile’s 1973 military coup against President Allende (her father’s cousin). Instead, it’s a stunningly intimate memoir of a woman, exiled from her cherished native land, who says, ”I write as a constant exercise in longing.”

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