America's bestselling author transports readers to magical Seville, Spain, at Easter time, a season of splendid pageantry, exciting bullfights, deep piety--and miracles. An American journalist, sent to Seville on assignment to cover the efforts of a rancher to revive his once proud line of bulls--uncovers a story that shakes his newspaperman's ...
America's bestselling author transports readers to magical Seville, Spain, at Easter time, a season of splendid pageantry, exciting bullfights, deep piety--and miracles. An American journalist, sent to Seville on assignment to cover the efforts of a rancher to revive his once proud line of bulls--uncovers a story that shakes his newspaperman's hard-bitten pragmatism. 26 illustrations.
If you appreciate bullfighting, this is a quick enjoyable book. A spiritual overtone marks a conflict between a bull breeder devoted to the corrida as an artform and a gypsy torero who, in the view of the breeder, makes a mockery of the art. LIttle knowledge of bullfighting is required, but the reader must have an appreciation of bullfdighting as an artform, and not simply an example of animal brutality. The drawings, by one of the first non-Spanish or Mexican matadors, are an excellent accompaniment to this little story.
Publishers Weekly, 1995-08-21 Minor Michener at best, this slim yarn of bullfighting, religious faith, honor and adventure reaffirms the author's love of Spain, evidenced in his earlier Iberia, and introduces a veneer of spirituality that bestows a glib trendiness on the narrative. In flashback, narrator Shenstone, an American sports journalist, tells about his experiences two decades previously, when he was covering bullfights in Seville during a three-week festival that began on Palm Sunday. Shenstone meets proud, aged rancher Don Cayetano Mota, who prays to the Virgin Mary that the bulls he raises will perform well and thereby redeem his family name. Don Cayetano, whose spirit enters the consciousness of his bulls as they fight in the ring, has repeated apparitions of the Madonna that skeptical rationalist Shenstone initially dismisses; as events unfold, however, the American's disbelief is shaken. Don Cayetano's enemy is scrawny, cowardly Gypsy matador L▀zaro L?pez, whose sister, the sinister Gypsy storyteller Magdalena, foresees that a bullfight will end in tragedy and uses her occult power to protect her brother. Regrettably, the final showdown in the ringŠa mortal duel between good and evilŠturns on simplistic stereotypes. And though Michener intends his colorful narrative, crammed with the lore of the toreador, as a paen to bullfighting, those who regard the sport as a cruel spectacle will find confirmation in the graphic narrative. Illustrated with 26 two-color drawings by John Fulton, a Seville-based American matador. Simultaneous Random House Audiobook; simultaneous large print trade edition, $22 0-679-76510-7. (Oct.)
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