A Novel

Book - 2011
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An epic novel of love, discovery, and adventure by the author of the best-selling memoir When I Was Puerto Rican.

As a young girl growing up in Spain, Ana Larragoity Cubillas is powerfully drawn to Puerto Rico by the diaries of an ancestor who traveled there with Ponce de León. And in handsome twin brothers Ramón and Inocente--both in love with Ana--she finds a way to get there. She marries Ramón, and in 1844, just eighteen, she travels across the ocean to a remote sugar plantation the brothers have inherited on the island.

Ana faces unrelenting heat, disease and isolation, and the dangers of the untamed countryside even as she relishes the challenge of running Hacienda los Gemelos. But when the Civil War breaks out in the United States, Ana finds her livelihood, and perhaps even her life, threatened by the very people on whose backs her wealth has been built: the hacienda's slaves, whose richly drawn stories unfold alongside her own. And when at last Ana falls for a man who may be her destiny--a once-forbidden love--she will sacrifice nearly everything to keep hold of the land that has become her true home.

This is a sensual, riveting tale, set in a place where human passions and cruelties collide: thrilling history that has never before been brought so vividly and unforgettably to life.
Published: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2011.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780307268327
Branch Call Number: F SAN
Characteristics: 413 p. ;,25 cm.


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Aug 02, 2013

I heartily disagree with the other comments: I found this novel completely fascinating as a heroic and liberated 19th century woman survives every possible obstacle to save her beloved sugar plantation, set in a historical venue--Puerto Rico--a country I knew so little about.

Depressing at times, yes, but being a slave owner with a conscience during the time of the American emancipation of slavery.;when the sugar cane still had to be harvested.

After reading this very well-written book, I felt I had just finished Gone With the Wind, Puerto Rican style! A fabulous read!!

Aug 13, 2012

I agree with the comments. The plot had alot of potential, however was very depressing. There are so many other ways that the storyline could've gone and yet, it seemed to drudge on.

The_Snow_Man Jul 07, 2012

Since I heard such great things about this book, I was very excited when I got my hands on it.
And yet . . .
I found the writing stiff and forced and I did not like the plot!

It wasn't bad; it just wasn't good.

lunap May 22, 2012

Heard so many good things about this book & author, and sorely disappointed once I finished. Reads like almost any other throwaway romance novels. Kinda had to force myself to finish. The 1st paragraphs & 1st chapter kinda gives you an idea how the rest of the book will flow. Didn't like all the unnessesarly flowery prose.

kpalichuk Dec 28, 2011

Not what I was hoping it would, or could be. I was bored by page 40.

Chitownchica Oct 20, 2011

Good read, but not something I would read again and again. I never expected this book to be as depressing as it actually was. The main character, Ana, ends up being conquered in every possible way while still managing to end the line of a once prosperous and promising family just for the sake of living out these fantastic ideas of her destiny that she thought up as a teenager.


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