Child of the Holy Ghost

Overview

"You're our mother and this is your country," I shouted at her, anything to stop her pain. "We don't care about that Middle Ages nonsense over there." But "over there" in his mother's natal Basque village, Pete finds himself stepping back into a medieval morality, into the rigid and unrelenting code of his ancestors, older and stronger than reason. Denied by his own blood kin, cold anger forges his determination to pierce the silence of the villagers and learn the circumstances of his mother's birth. One by one the ghosts rise up. Jeanne,
... See more details below
Available through our Marketplace sellers.
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (5) from $69.99   
  • New (1) from $176.40   
  • Used (4) from $69.99   
Close
Sort by
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Note: Marketplace items are not eligible for any BN.com coupons and promotions
$176.40
Seller since 2008

Feedback rating:

(215)

Condition:

New — never opened or used in original packaging.

Like New — packaging may have been opened. A "Like New" item is suitable to give as a gift.

Very Good — may have minor signs of wear on packaging but item works perfectly and has no damage.

Good — item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Acceptable — item is in working order but may show signs of wear such as scratches or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Used — An item that has been opened and may show signs of wear. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Refurbished — A used item that has been renewed or updated and verified to be in proper working condition. Not necessarily completed by the original manufacturer.

New

Ships from: Chicago, IL

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Close
Sort by
Sending request ...

Overview

"You're our mother and this is your country," I shouted at her, anything to stop her pain. "We don't care about that Middle Ages nonsense over there." But "over there" in his mother's natal Basque village, Pete finds himself stepping back into a medieval morality, into the rigid and unrelenting code of his ancestors, older and stronger than reason. Denied by his own blood kin, cold anger forges his determination to pierce the silence of the villagers and learn the circumstances of his mother's birth. One by one the ghosts rise up. Jeanne, beautiful and headstrong, who carried her head too high and invited a disaster she would defiantly embrace. Garat, her father, solid and unyielding as the stone of his ancestral house. Maitia, the golden child who would be Pete's mother, born to the hellish accompaniment of rough music that was the village's supreme censure for her mother's violation of the moral code. On the day of her First Communion, Maitia's cold baptism into the realm of shame killed forever her smile of innocence and stiffened a resolve that would last her lifetime. All her passion would be distilled toward one end - gaining the respect that, finally, could only be found across the sea, in America. Interwoven is the story of Petya, Pete's father, forced by accident to flee the high Pyrenees and find a new life as a lonely sheepherder in the northern deserts of Nevada. His struggles with loneliness and the temptations of emerging manhood provide a background for the stark reality of a young immigrant whose pain and growing sense of self-determination transform him into the essential being we know as American. In Robert Laxalt's earlier works he has written hauntingly of the beauty of his ancestral Basque homeland. Now, in the second volume of his Basque family trilogy, he lifts the veil that conceals the subtle cruelties of those fierce guardians of private scandal, the villagers who will keep from the world what is dear to them.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In his novel The Basque Hotel, Laxalt explored the immigrant experience through the eyes of Peter, a Basque-American boy growing up in Nevada during the Depression. In the elegant second volume of this family trilogy, Peter journeys to his parents' native land to learn more about his mother's secret past. The ``child'' in the title is the narrator's mother, Maitia, whose life has been tainted by her illegitimacy. Laxalt brings a mythopoeic solemnity to the reconstructed experiences of both Maitia, growing up in a tiny Basque village, and Petya, a youth whose family sends him to the American West after he witnesses a murder. Though the characters seem limited--perhaps deliberately--to two dimensions, the Basque countryside and the American desert where Petya finds work as a shepherd spring to life in the writer's direct and unadorned style. The impecunious Basques of the village of Donibanesp ok and their rich sense of tradition are evoked through details: young Petya wears his father's mismatched suit, a hand-me-down from his deceased grandfather, who was buried in his nightshirt because ``the suit would have been wasted beneath the ground in the churchyard.'' A subtle novel, illuminating and worthwhile. (Nov.)
Library Journal
Part of the publisher's ``Basque'' series, this novel by Basque American Laxalt explores the effect of cultural taboos (in this case, illegitimacy) on a family and its descendants. The Basque American narrator, who uncovers his mother's long-kept secret shame (her illegitimate birth) as he prepares to visit the land of his ancestors, is spurred to discover the truth of this secret when he is introduced by one of his cousins as an American friend instead of a blood relation. The story unfolds like a collapsed telescope into a past connected to the present. The language is simple, the story poignant and dignified. Recommended for literary collections.-- Linda L. Rome, Middlefield P.L., Ohio
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780874173079
  • Publisher: University of Nevada Press
  • Publication date: 10/13/1997
  • Series: Basque Series
  • Pages: 168
  • Product dimensions: 6.23 (w) x 9.31 (h) x 0.83 (d)

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)