Una liturgia común (A Book of Common Prayer)

Overview

The focus of this novel is a personal and political tragedy that takes place in Boca Grande, an imaginary Central American state dominated by political corruption, the distribution of power among members of the same family, arms trafficking, and conspiracy. The narrator, Grace Strasser-Mendana, is the American widow of the most powerful man in Boca Grande, and she controls a large part of the country’s wealth and knows practically all of its secrets. Grace is also an anthropologist who attempts to find scientific...

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Overview

The focus of this novel is a personal and political tragedy that takes place in Boca Grande, an imaginary Central American state dominated by political corruption, the distribution of power among members of the same family, arms trafficking, and conspiracy. The narrator, Grace Strasser-Mendana, is the American widow of the most powerful man in Boca Grande, and she controls a large part of the country’s wealth and knows practically all of its secrets. Grace is also an anthropologist who attempts to find scientific answers for the mysteries of human behavior. She tries to give voice to Charlotte Douglas’s passage through Boca Grande, an upper-class Californian woman who is ignorant to the extremes of innocence and who seems oblivious to the dangerous scenery in which she finds herself, leading her to an unfortunate end foretold from the very first chapter of the novel.

 

El enfoque de esta novela es una tragedia personal y política que ocurre en Boca Grande, un imaginario estado centroamericano dominado por la corrupción política, el reparto del poder entre los miembros de una misma familia, el tráfico de armas y la conspiración. La narradora, Grace Strasser-Mendana, es la viuda americana del hombre más poderoso de Boca Grande, controla buena parte de la riqueza del país y conoce prácticamente todos sus secretos. Grace es además una antropóloga que intenta encontrar respuestas científicas a los misterios del comportamiento humano, y trata de dar testimonio del paso por Boca Grande de Charlotte Douglas, una californiana de clase alta que es ignorante hasta la inocencia y que parece no darse cuenta del peligroso escenario en el que se mueve, encaminándose a un fin anunciado desde el primer capítulo de la novela.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9788496879041
  • Publisher: Global Rhythm Press
  • Publication date: 9/1/2007
  • Language: Spanish
  • Series: Palabra de mujer
  • Edition description: Spanish language edition
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Joan Didion is the author of five novels, several essays on American history and politics, and a memoir. She lives in New York City.

Biography

One of the strongest voices in American letters, Joan Didion has made her mark with fiercely intelligent novels (Play It As It Lays, A Book of Common Prayer), insightful nonfiction (Salvador, Political Fictions), and screenplays co-written with her late husband, John Gregory Dunne (Panic in Needle Park, Up Close and Personal).

Born in Sacramento, Didion attended the University of California at Berkeley, graduating in 1956 with a degree in English. After college, she moved to New York to work for Vogue magazine. Recognized immediately as a talented and insightful writer, she contributed frequently to such diverse publications as Mademoiselle, Esquire, The New York Times, and National Review; and in 1963 she published her first novel, Run River. She and Dunne were wed in 1964; and for the remainder of their married life, they divided their time between New York and L.A., collaborating frequently on Hollywood scripts while developing separate and distinguished literary careers.

In December of 2003, Dunne died of a massive heart attack, while the couple's recently married daughter, Quintana Roo, lay comatose in a New York hospital. Didion spent the next year blindsided by a grief so profound it propelled her into a sort of madness. She chronicled the entire experience in The Year of Magical Thinking, a spellbinding memoir of bereavement written in the spare, elegant prose that has become a hallmark of her work. Published in 2005 (scant months after Quintana's death), this elegiac book -- Didion's most personal and affecting work to date -- became a huge bestseller. It received a National Book Award and was turned, two years later, into a successful Broadway play starring Vanessa Redgrave.

Since her 1963 debut, Didion has alternated between novels and nonfiction, proving herself a wry and astute observer of America's shifting political and cultural landscape. Written nearly a decade apart, her two essay collections Slouching Towards Bethlehem (1968) and The White Album (1979) are considered classics of 1960s counterculture. Moreover, the author's identity as a seventh-generation Californian has colored her writing in profoundly significant ways. For our money, no contemporary American writer has examined more deftly the unique role of "place" in everyday life.

Good To Know

A few interesting outtakes from our interview with Didion:

"My first (and only, ever) job was at Vogue. I learned a great deal there – I learned how to use words economically (because I was writing to space), I learned how to very quickly take in enough information about an entirely foreign subject to produce a few paragraphs that at least sounded authoritative."

"I would like my readers to know that writing never gets any easier. You don't gain confidence. You are always flying blind."

Didion and her husband, John Gregory Dunne, co-wrote seven screenplays, including: The Panic in Needle Park (1971), Play It As It Lays (1973), A Star Is Born (1977), True Confessions (1982), Hills Like White Elephants (1990), Broken Trust(1995) and Up Close and Personal (1995).

She is the sister-in-law of author Dominick Dunne and the aunt of actor/director Griffin Dunne.

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    1. Hometown:
      New York, New York
    1. Date of Birth:
      December 5, 1934
    2. Place of Birth:
      Sacramento, California
    1. Education:
      B.A., University of California at Berkeley, 1956

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