Pérez-Reverte has become well know outside of Spain, this
being his first best-seller in the US. The story of a priest
from the Vatican investigating some strange deaths centering
around a local church slated to be closed. A hacker has
entered the Vatican computer system to alert the priest
and I doubt you'll ever guess who it is until the end. Aside
from a good mystery it's full of details and observation
on Sevilla that only a Spaniard could give. A great read
- highly recommended even if mystery is not your thing.
Blind Man of Seville
A police thriller with elements of horror. Takes places
during Semana Santa as a detective tries to hunt down an
assassin with an agenda for revenge. While I'm not much
into this type of fiction I found it hard to put down. With
the detective running right past my house, amongst other
things, it was great to read. Being able to visualize my
every day haunts come to life made the book more real for
me. As Wilson spent a lot of time with the local police
it was an interesting look inside the law enforcement and
criminal justice system in Sevilla as well.
Quixote: The Ingenious Hidalgo De LA Mancha
Don Quixote or Don Quijote, however you want to spell it.
The man, the horse, the windmill. I won't try to describe
this book in order to avoid any injustices I may inflict
The Sun Also Rises is one of Hemingway's masterpieces and
no matter how many times you've read it or how you feel
about the manners and morals of the characters, you won't
be able to resist its spell. This is a classic that really
does live up to its reputation. (review courtesy
It might not be pure fiction, but it reads like it when
it's Hemingway. Hemingway covered the 1959 bullfighting
season as a piece for Life magazine which ended up being
his last work before his death at the age of 60. His goal
was to cover the places and events which inspired his novel
Death in the Afternoon. The work concentrates on
two rival matadors during the season while Hemingway's friendship
one of them provides an interesting perspective. Aside from
it being Hemingway and Spain, the book offers a wonderful
portrait of bullfighting and Spain in the Franco era.
in the Afternoon
Again with the above - but I like it here in fiction as
well as the Toros section. The corrida, or bullfight,
through the eyes of Hemingway is something special. Covering
the details thoroughly from the matador to the bull a wonderful
picture and lesson on what the corrida really is:
part sport, part art and of course ritual and pageantry.
Hemingway's colorful descriptions of the matadors, placing
them in categories which range from coward to glory seeker
to hero, are something to remember.
Whom the Bell Tolls
Emerging from Hemingway's three years of covering the Spanish
Civil War, the novel is follows the life of Robert Jordan,
an American professor who joins the socialist republican
forces as a member of an international brigade. A vivid
and emotional account of the war, it's tragedies, passion
and heroes that only Hemingway could provide.
Originally written in Arabic, this book is a collection
of poetry born in Andalucia which beautifully represents
the times of Moorish Spain. Well translated by Cola Franzen
considering in reading this you'll be on the third language
(Arabic to Spanish to English). If you know Spanish I do
recommend reading them that way, but she does an excellent
job of conveying the emotions of the original authors. Of
course if you speak Arabic track them down in the original
language and that's even better.