Novelist Isabel Allende in her new book A LONG PETAL OF THE SEA takes her readers on a journey beginning with the Spanish Civil War in the 1930s and ending in her native Chile.
Refugees from Franco’s takeover of Spain crowd over the French Border seeking asylum somewhere, anywhere. Poet-diplomat Pablo Neruda becomes a non-fiction co-narrator of the novel as the ship Winnipeg transports the disposed across the globe to his native Chile.
“Life is how we tell it” and so begins the story of lives lived and lost, loves of convenience and passion, glimpses of ruling classes, military juntas, Allende, Pinochet, escape to Venezuela and a return to the petal of the sea.
I have enjoyed Allende’s Daughter of Fortune, Island Beneath the Sea and The Japanese Lover. A LONG PETEL OF THE SEA is no exception. (Search this blog.) Wherever you may find yourself this summer, Allende’s new book or any of the aforementioned will be good company.