Wednesday, July 13, 2005
Slash, slash, slash
I just finished Isabel Allende's new novel about Zorro's California childhood and Barcelona adolescence. It was totally wicked!!! Exciting and romantic as it should be, but with twists of irony, feminism, and awareness of its own constructs that made it just delicious, like rich chocolate with a tangy lemon zing. (Must I always come back to food? Um, yes.)
In Allende's work, everything Diego de la Vega encounters through his youth plays into how the famous California Zorro creates himself. The Native American values of his childhood, the political events in Barcelona in the early years of the 19th Century, even historical figures like the dastardly but lovable New Orleans pirate Jean Lafitte. Add in a few familiar figures from the old TV show and you have a downright fascinating exploration of the world of Zorro.
I always love reading novels translated from Spanish, like Allende's or Gabriel Garcia-Marquez's. There is a lilt to the language, somehow, even in translation. I so should have listened to my mother and taken Spanish instead of French in school. I love French, too, but seeing as how I live in California and not Quebec ... yeah. And it would be so cool to read books like this in the original language.
Back to Zorro. Man oh man, there's some awesome stuff that I just can't tell you without messing it up for you. Get thee to the library, or Amazon or something.
Bonus: my four year old has a black cape with a red lining in the dress-up box. I think I see a Halloween costume forming ...