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4.3 3
by Norman Spinrad

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Published in Britain as a major historical novel, a best-seller in Spanish translation, MEXICA is the amazing full true story of Hernando Cortes� conquest of Mexico, told in depth as only a novel could tell it--from both the Spanish and Aztec points of view, by Cortes, by Montezuma and by the only character in the novel who is not a real historical character, Alvaro


Published in Britain as a major historical novel, a best-seller in Spanish translation, MEXICA is the amazing full true story of Hernando Cortes� conquest of Mexico, told in depth as only a novel could tell it--from both the Spanish and Aztec points of view, by Cortes, by Montezuma and by the only character in the novel who is not a real historical character, Alvaro de Sevilla, a secret Jew who presents yet a third and passionately neutral point of view. A novel that restored their own true name, Mexica, to the so-called �Aztecs� (an insult meaning �barbarians from nowhere� in Nahuatl) in Mexico.

Unable to find a conventional American publisher on the grounds that Americans would not be interested in a historical novel about Mexico, and this in a country with 40 or 50 million Mexican-Americans fluent in English, this ebook is the very first American edition.

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Norman Spinrad
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Meet the Author

Norman Spinrad is the author of over twenty novels, including BUG JACK BARRON, THE IRON DREAM, CHILD OF FORTUNE, PICTURES AT 11, GREENHOUSE SUMMER, and THE DRUID KING.
He has also published something like 60 short stories collected in half a dozen volumes. The novels and stories have been published in about 15 languages.
His most recent novel length publication is HE WALKED AMONG US, published in April 2010 by Tor.
He's written teleplays, including the classic Star Trek, �The Doomsday Machine,� and two produced feature films DRUIDS and LA SIRENE ROUGE. He is a long time literary critic, sometime film critic, perpetual political analyst, and sometime songwriter.
He's also briefly been a radio phone show host, has appeared as a vocal artist on three albums, and occassionally performs live. He�s been a literary agent, and President of the Science Fiction Writers of America and World SF. He�s posted 21 YouTube videos to date.
He grew up in New York, has lived in Los Angeles, San Francisco, London, and Paris, and travelled widely in Europe and rather less so in Latin America, Asia, and Oceania.

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MEXICA 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Noooo! Cliffie!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Chicanonautica: Mexica, Norman Spinrad, and the Electronic Revolution It was as if an expedition of black Africans had made their way up the Nile and across the Mediterranean to Italy and were trying to make enough sense of the Roman Empire of the Caesars to attempt to conquer it. - Norman Spinrad, Mexica I think we need to make Norman Spinrad an honorary Chicano. His novel of the conquest of Mexico, Mexica, is the reason. It was published in Spanish in Mexico, where it was a bestseller. A film is in the works, in English, from El Uno productions. Those are things that not many Chicano/Latino writers have accomplished. But, before you go online or to you're favorite bookstore to grab a copy, don't bother. This amazing novel is not available in English, or in America. Seems that Nueva York has treated Norman Spinrad like a Chicano. He and his agent bounced the book all over Nueva York -- and couldn't sell it. Spinrad reports that most of the rejections were on on the assumption that: . . . American readers wouldn't be interested in an historical novel about the key event in Mexican history, this in a country where there are at least 40 or 50 million Mexican-Americans fluent in English whose very culture and ethnic identity were the result. Yet Mexica has a potential appeal far beyond the Latino Lit market. It's one of those books that has everything. Not just a bit of ethnic studies and historical curiosity, this rather straight reportage of the Conquest is more fantastic than the best science fiction and fantasy. It makes Star Wars and Lord of the Rings look mundane. There's action, adventure, horror, even romance. You want wild entertainment? Well, here it is! It's also a powerful rendering of an important subject. Spinrad's viewpoint character, a Jewish Spaniard who had lived under the Muslims and the Inquisition, provides a fresh perspective to the Mexica (it is pointed that "Aztec" was derogatory term, like Chicano once was), and Spaniards who are equally alien to the modern reader. The rich complexities of Latino identity become clear: Marina, who had been Malinal, smiled at Alvaro de Sevilla, who had been Alvaro Escribiente de Granada, who in his heart was still Avram ibn Ezra or in truth Avram ben Ezra. As history goes on, identities change. Maybe that's what Nueva York is afraid of . . . So why am bothering you with all this, if you can't buy this book? Well, the good news is, you can! But not in the old way. Spinrad has released Mexica as an ebook. Nueva York's days as the literary capital of the world are numbered. A revolution has begun. And the changes that will come for readers, writers, and publishers will be comparable to those that happened when Cortes conquered Tenochitlán. Go now, and join the revolution.
JGolomb More than 1 year ago
It's a classic historical story - Hernan Cortes and a relatively small troop of Spaniards march through the countryside of a newly discovered country in a newly discovered part of the world. What followed can best be captured by the immortal words of another world conquerer Julius Caesar: "veni, vidi, vici" - "I came, I saw, I conquered". Norman Spinrad is most well known as a science fiction author, but he makes a smooth transition into historical fiction with his very straight forward and beautifully written account of Hernan Cortes' conquering of the Aztecs. "Mexica" refers to one of the proper names of the people that ultimately became known as Aztecs. The story is written from the perspective of the fictional Alvaro de Sevilla, notary and ghost writer for Hernan Cortes. Alvaro writes through the lens of someone who lived through most of Cortes' campaign, as well as someone who spent time with Cortes' adversary, Montezuma. Most of Spinrad's novel is a well-written and consumable version of the actual Cortes adventure. The historical versions of this story come from sources that range from the very biased letters of Cortes himself, writings from relatively contemporary Aztecs, as well as the well-known writings of Bernal Diaz del Castillo, who makes a couple of cameo appearances in "Mexica". Spinrad weaves his tale through the pen of Alvaro who provides his own real-time perspective and analyses on events as he creates well-rounded three-dimensional characters in Cortes and Montezuma. The slave-turned-translator, Malinal, becomes Alvaro's confidant and unwitting conspirator as well. Malinal and Alvaro are positioned as confidants to Cortes and find themselves guiding the hand of the conquistador - from helping secure the lease to explore the New World, to deftly dancing the dangerously heretical line of playing the role of god Quetzalcoatal, who lives in Mexica legend as a pale-faced bearded god who will return to the land of the Mexica from the East. The greatest addition to the pantheon of New Spain conquest stories is the first person dialogues between Cortes and Montezuma themselves. It's here that Spinrad explores the myriad of motivations that are always skewed through historical perspective. Alvaro learns the Mexica language of Nahautl and becomes Montezuma's confessor, confidant, and friend during the days in which he's held prisoner in his own city by the Spaniards. Montezuma's actions always appear to be rather random, superstitious, inconsistent, selfish, unexplainable, and barbaric. Spinrad spins the tale a different way as we see a sympathetic ruler, looking to do the best for his people and his city, while consistently seeking guidance and approval from his gods. While Aztec sacrifices seem hideously violent and harsh, as Alvaro points out, are the Aztec actions all that different from the Spaniards during the inquisition? Do Christians also not look to their gods for guidance and direction? I thoroughly enjoyed his book. Battle scenes are well-told and realistic. Alvaro's theological explorations of what drove Montezuma and Cortes are clear and logical, and fit seamlessly with the well-paced story.