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Masterpieces of Latino Literature
     

Masterpieces of Latino Literature

by Frank N. Magill
 
An addition to the successful Masterpieces of Literature series that summarizes, explains and evaluates the greatest works of Latino literature -- including books by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Oscar Hijuelos and Laura Esquivel.

Overview

An addition to the successful Masterpieces of Literature series that summarizes, explains and evaluates the greatest works of Latino literature -- including books by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Oscar Hijuelos and Laura Esquivel.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Intended as a "companion volume" to Masterpieces of World Literature (1989), this work is identical in format to Masterpieces of African-American Literature (LJ 2/1/93) except that the articles are unsigned. "Latino" here includes authors from South, Central, and North America. The 173 entries are arranged alphabetically by title or genre and include an introduction of principal characters, plot summary, analysis, and critical context (with some degree of overlap in material). Although the coverage purportedly ranges from the 17th century (Sor Juana Ins de la Cruz), the emphasis is decidedly upon contemporary writers. The established canon of major figures is well represented (Carlos Fuentes, Garca Mrquez, and Vargas Llosa each merit six articles). Serious students would find the absence of sources for further reading a handicap. Recommended for general audiences.-Charles E. Perry, East Central Univ., Ada, Okla.
Zom Zoms
From the seemingly inexhaustible Frank N. Magill comes this new addition to the Masterpieces series, joining "Masterpieces of American Literature" and "Masterpieces of African-American Literature", among others. "Masterpieces of Latino Literature" covers works by 105 authors of Latino heritage from South, Central, and North America, from the seventeenth century to the present. It was developed "in response to the growing need for reference works capable of presenting information on ethnic literature in an accessible format." A number of faculty members from U.S. colleges contributed to the volume and are acknowledged in the preface. Individual entries are not signed "Masterpieces" covers a variety of works, both classic and newer fiction and nonfiction. No criteria for inclusion are provided in the preface, although some familiarity to a mainstream English-speaking audience seems to be a factor. Nearly all of the works not originally written in English are available in English translations. Experts in the literatures of the various nations of Latin America would probably dispute many of the inclusions and exclusions. The poetry of the colonial nun Sor Juana de la Cruz and the novels of Nobel Prize-winner Gabriel Garcia Marquez are included, as are such recent popular works as "Like Water for Chocolate" by Laura Esquivel, "How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents" by Julia Alvarez, and "Dreaming in Cuban" by Cristina Garcia, perhaps not "masterpieces" in the strictest sense of the word. There are entries for such Hispanic American writers as Rudolfo Anaya, Sandra Cisneros, and Oscar Hijuelos, but not for Ron Arias, whose "Road to Tamazunchale" was nominated for a National Book Award Entries are arranged alphabetically, by title for individual works, and by genre in the case of essays covering all the work of a particular type by an author, such as "The Essays of Jorge Luis Borges" and "The Poetry of Gary Soto." There are 140 entries on individual titles, and 33 entries on genres. Each entry follows a standard format. Brief ready-reference capsules give the author's name, the type of work, the type of plot (for example, "magic realism," "family"), the time of plot, the locale, and the dates of first publication and first English translation. This is followed by a description of the principal characters, an approximately 700-word overview of the plot, a 600-word analysis, and a 500-word section of critical context. The genre entries begin with ready-reference data providing a list of principal published work, followed by a 2,500-word essay. Author and title indexes conclude the book Information on many of the authors covered in "Masterpieces" can be found in other reference works, including various volumes of "Contemporary Authors", "Contemporary Literary Criticism", and "Dictionary of Literary Biography". Most of the authors appear in Gale's "Hispanic Writers" (1990), which compiles sketches from "Contemporary Authors". "Masterpieces of Latino Literature" differs from these in that it takes a title rather than an author approach and provides more information on individual works. Its limitations in terms of the authors it includes and its formulaic approach make it inadequate for serious study. However, "Masterpieces of Latino Literature" will serve as a good introductory source in high school and public libraries.
Booknews
This newest volume in the Masterpieces series (following World Philosophy, World Literature, African-American Literature, and American Literature) contains some 175 articles that provide descriptions, analyses, characters, plots, themes, critical evaluations, and significance of the greatest works of fiction, nonfiction, drama, and poetry by authors of Latin heritage living in South, Central, and North America who write in Spanish, Portuguese, and English. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062701060
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
09/01/1994
Edition description:
1st ed
Pages:
672
Product dimensions:
7.79(w) x 9.55(h) x 1.92(d)

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