The Angel of Galilea
AbeBooks Mitglied seit 1996
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AbeBooks Mitglied seit 1996
Titel: The Angel of Galilea
Verlag: Crown, New York, New York, U.S.A.
Zustand des Schutzumschlags: Fine
Auflage: First American Edition.
Über diesen Titel
Laura Restrepo's prize-winning The Angel of Galilea, newly translated into English, is a sublimely original, utterly contemporary story of love, faith, poverty, and mystery.
Mona, a Colombian journalist once idealistic and determined to better the world, has been reduced to recounting the vapid pronouncements of newly crowned beauty queens for the tabloid journal that employs her. When her editor sends her to investigate reported sightings of an angel in a barrio on the outskirts of Bogotá, it's just another day's work. The angel craze has arrived late from America, and true to Colombian fashion she will now be expected to "warm up another topic already cold in the U.S."
When she arrives in the flooded poorest-of-the-poor barrio of Galilea, she finds the residents in passionate conflict over a strange but beautiful young man. Magnificent, overwhelming, enigmatic, and possessing an undeniable sexual magnetism, he is revered by some as an angel and denounced by others, including the local priest, as an infernal impostor. Mona reads the story of this "angel without a name" in tattered journals transcribed by his mother and communes silently with him in the moonlight, falling deeply, passionately in love with him. Risking all, she commits herself to saving him from the forces that would destroy him.
This silent, powerful angel, left out of the official heavenly host, personifies for the outcast, impoverished residents of Galilea their faith and hope. For Mona he is the avatar of a mystery she abandoned in childhood and, in a single, passionate, intimate embrace, fulfills both her desire to love completely and her longing to believe.
The Angel of Galilea has been awarded the Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz Prize in Mexico and the Prix France Culture in France.
"A few days before it all started, three men raped a crazy woman in the garden in front of my building. It was around then that my neighbor's dog vaulted from a third-story window, landed on the street, and walked away unharmed. And the leper who sells lottery tickets ... gave birth to a healthy, beautiful baby."
To Mona, a cynical young reporter for one of Bogota's many popular tabloids, these events seem significant only in retrospect. "Surely those were signs, among many others," she remarks, "but then again this insane city gives off so many doomsday warnings that no one pays attention anymore." Certainly, Mona's own great adventure begins ordinarily enough when she is told to investigate the presence of an angel in one of the city's poorest neighborhoods. At first she assumes that this is yet another example of Colombian journalists warming up "what is already passé in Miami." But when she arrives in Galilea in a cold, driving rain, and is taken to see the tall, dark, handsome--and nearly naked--celestial spirit, she begins to wonder if the stories might not be true.
Of course, this being Colombia, it isn't long before the angel becomes both the object of a religious cult and the rallying point for a revolutionary movement. As peasants flock to him, the army and the church hunt him down. Meanwhile Mona finds herself falling in love with this possibly fallen angel, even as she continues to dig for less supernatural explanations for his strange power. Though Laura Restrepo's prose occasionally overheats, for the most part her writing is refreshingly matter-of-fact with just a touch of irony, allowing even those who would be happy never to see another of Raphael's cherubs peering out from a T-shirt or coffee mug to enjoy this angelic tale. --Alix Wilber
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