First published in 1980, "Aztec" reached No.1 position on the "New York Times" bestseller list. "Aztec" - The extraordinary story of the last and greatest native civilization of North America, at the very height of its magnificence, was told by a novelist working at the very height of his powers. It is a story told in the words of one of the most ...
First published in 1980, "Aztec" reached No.1 position on the "New York Times" bestseller list. "Aztec" - The extraordinary story of the last and greatest native civilization of North America, at the very height of its magnificence, was told by a novelist working at the very height of his powers. It is a story told in the words of one of the most robust and memorable characters of recent fiction. His name is Mixtli - Dark Cloud. Born the son of a provincial quarrier, Mixtli rises far above his station. He becomes, first, a scribe; he goes on to distinguish himself as a warrior, earns a fortune as a travelling merchant and explores every part of what the Aztecs called - The One World - the far lands of mountains, jungles, deserts, seacoasts. His courage and resourcefulness earn him a knighthood and, eventually, elevation to the nobility. "Aztec" is a novel of heroic dimension in every respect. Twelve years in the making, it is compelling in story, in its feel of history happening and in its tumult of events. It is rich with memorable characters and brilliantly colourful exoticism. It is an epic tale, full of power and surprise that will leave its readers wishing it would never end.
The thing about good historical novels is that good ones don't become dated. There may be some points archaeological work has shed more light on, but the non-expert isn't bothered by them.
Missed this when it first came out.
May 8, 2008
lots of sex and sacrificing going on
The Emperor of Spain, Don Carlos, wants to know what his subjects, the Aztexs in New Spain, are like. He communicates throughout the book with his chaplain, bishop of the See in New Spain, regarding especially, one specific aztec, a man called Mixtil-Dark Cloud. When we first meet Mixtil he is a scribe, but with each chapter he rises in esteem, wealth and knowledge. Mixtil becomes a warrior (by accident) and then a traveling merchant. As a traveling merchant we see much of Mexico of the 1500's through his eyes. I love the way the story is told from the viewpoint of an Aztec, and how you were made to see how overbearing and cruel the catholic priests were to the natives. I felt the author overdid the various plots towards sex, and I was abhorred with the telling of acts of sacrifice, especially of his daughter, but other than that , it was a great adventure for me.
May 3, 2007
Jennings painstakingly researched historical facts for this book. If you are acquainted with Mexica history, you'll be marveled at the way he weaves the story with history. If you don't know anything about Mesoamerica, you will nevertheless enjoy the story telling and the characters all the way to the last page.
Apr 3, 2007
Mr. Jennings is a little too into incest and sexual encounters for my taste. The book is a NOVEL so most of the stuff has to be read under that light. If you do not know about Aztec history then this would not be a good introductory for it because you do not know what is true and what is fictional.
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