Customer Reviews for

The Conquest of New Spain

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  • Posted February 20, 2010

    For sure a classic!!!!!

    At first I was debating on whether or not to get this book.Boy am I glad i did.Diaz writes in a manner that will keep you glued to the pages.This book speaks to me as part of my history.My father was Mexican American and my mother is of Andalucian decent so this book is pure gold about the two cultures. For sure will I read this adventurous book to my kids when then are a little older.

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  • Posted November 26, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Rich in contemporary detail

    Of all of the writers of history, none may be as accurate in their accounts as are actual witnesses to the events being chronicled. Yet at the same time, we're all aware that honest witnesses to crimes and accidents often give contradicting testimony to what they believe they have seen. But it is for more than this that should give us caution when reading this book.
    Bernal Díaz didn't begin to write the memoirs of his experiences as a conquistador until about 35 years following those events. How many senior citizens reading this can remember so much detail from their experiences 35 years ago? How well could Bernal accurately quote from the mouth of Cortés, Montezuma and many others? Every reader must wonder to what extent three and a half decades might have affected the accuracy of Diaz's writing.
    But even with the above in mind, The Discovery and Conquest of Mexico has the privilege of being written by an actual witness of events as they happened. Whether it was the slick-talking Hernan Cortes smoothing over his artful cheating of his own men for personal gain, the emotions felt when entering the Aztec city Tenochtitlan, describing the treasures of the new world, witnessing human sacrifices, his many voyages, or the bloody description of fierce combat, Díaz was there, writing from his own experience. It is likely that there is hardly a book as rich in description with such relevance to the history of the Americas as is this narrative by one of Hernan Cortes's foot soldiers.

    Bruce Stores has lived in Mexico since 1995, currently residing in the city of Oaxaca. He is author of the historical fiction book, "THE ISTHMUS: Stories from Mexico's Past, 1495 to 1995", iUniverse, 2009

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  • Posted November 25, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    I Will Never Forget This One!

    I was assigned this book in college several years ago and was completely engrossed from the beginning. This is a fabulous book!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2007

    You are almost at his side!

    My father read this book 30 years ago and always spoke of it. After searching on-line, I gave it to him for Fathers Day 'he was so delighted it still existed!!'. I had to read it first, then my husband... Reading history books is different than reading personal accounts! Bernal Diaz spoke plainly, descriptively and with such clarity of memory that we laughed, cried, was completely repulsed right along with him. Not great for young teens or younger because of graphic discriptions of certain religious rites & extremes.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 9, 1999

    Once upon a time.........

    I read this book 28 years ago when I was living for a few months in Mexico. That area came alive for me. I will never forget it! I now live in New Mexico and am studying the history of that state. I'm impressed with what a good foundation this book gave me to my current studies. Its a wonderful read!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 6, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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