The Lacuna

by Barbara Kingsolver | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: 0571252672 Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingNakipawing of Lisboa - City, Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on 8/31/2014
Buy from one of these Booksellers: | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon DE | Amazon FR | Amazon IT |
6 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by wingNakipawing from Lisboa - City, Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on Sunday, August 31, 2014
" In her most accomplished novel, Barbara Kingsolver takes us on an epic journey from the Mexico City of artists Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo to the America of Pearl Harbor, FDR, and J. Edgar Hoover. "The Lacuna" is a poignant story of a man pulled between two nations as they invent their modern identities.

Born in the United States, reared in a series of provisional households in Mexico--from a coastal island jungle to 1930s Mexico City--Harrison Shepherd finds precarious shelter but no sense of home on his thrilling odyssey. Life is whatever he learns from housekeepers who put him to work in the kitchen, errands he runs in the streets, and one fateful day, by mixing plaster for famed Mexican muralist Diego Rivera. He discovers a passion for Aztec history and meets the exotic, imperious artist Frida Kahlo, who will become his lifelong friend. When he goes to work for Lev Trotsky, an exiled political leader fighting for his life, Shepherd inadvertently casts his lot with art and revolution, newspaper headlines and howling gossip, and a risk of terrible violence.

Meanwhile, to the north, the United States will soon be caught up in the internationalist goodwill of World War II. There in the land of his birth, Shepherd believes he might remake himself in America's hopeful image and claim a voice of his own. He finds support from an unlikely kindred soul, his stenographer, Mrs. Brown, who will be far more valuable to her employer than he could ever know. Through darkening years, political winds continue to toss him between north and south in a plot that turns many times on the unspeakable breach--the lacuna--between truth and public presumption.

With deeply compelling characters, a vivid sense of place, and a clear grasp of how history and public opinion can shape a life, Barbara Kingsolver has created an unforgettable portrait of the artist--and of art itself. "The Lacuna" is a rich and daring work of literature, establishing its author as one of the most provocative and important of her time."

Journal Entry 2 by wingNakipawing at Lisboa - City, Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on Tuesday, April 14, 2015
It was probably the best book I read in 2014. Shepherd's story takes us to colorful Mexico in the time of Frida and Diego and then it takes us on a journey back to his homeland, where he feels neither Mexican nor truly american. It is a eye opener to the discrimination that comes in so many forms, sometimes unknown to someone like me.

Journal Entry 3 by wingNakipawing at Lisboa - City, Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Released 4 yrs ago (4/14/2015 UTC) at Lisboa - City, Lisboa (cidade) Portugal


Time to share this great book. I hope you enjoy! :D

Journal Entry 4 by kizmiaz at Belém , Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on Sunday, April 26, 2015
Got it on Friday, I'll be starting it soon, I hope.
Thanks for sharing!!

Journal Entry 5 by kizmiaz at Belém , Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on Saturday, December 19, 2015
I've had this book on my wishlist for so long that I couldn't remember why I put it there in the first place, but I'm glad I did.
What a great read!
A very well written novel with a good pace and some amazing characters, quite a few of them real and bigger than life, Frida, Diego and Trotsky certainly catch your eye.
It's almost an historical novel but it doesn't really aim to be that.
I really enjoyed this novel and the way that it is written with the story unfolding through journals and diaries, the author drags the reader in and once you're in you just have to know what is going to happen to Shepherd.
A great book that I certainly recommend, especially if you like epic novels.

Journal Entry 6 by kizmiaz at Belém , Lisboa (cidade) Portugal on Friday, July 07, 2017

Released 2 yrs ago (7/7/2017 UTC) at Belém , Lisboa (cidade) Portugal


released as a RABCK for my 12th anniversary of BC

Journal Entry 7 by Pequete at Bragança, Bragança Portugal on Wednesday, July 12, 2017
It's with me! Thank you for the RABCK, kizmiaz, and congratulations again for the 12 years. I hope to read this one soon.

Journal Entry 8 by Pequete at Bragança, Bragança Portugal on Wednesday, August 29, 2018
I think this is probably the best book I have read this year so far.
I liked almost everything about it: the structure of the book, which is a mixture of journals of the main character, William Shepherd, since he was a boy until he becomes an adult, the main narrator, the supposed compiler of the book, and several newspaper clips. The writing of adult Shepherd/Kingsolver is beautiful, the story is truly epic, covering important moments of Mexican and USA history, and Kingsolver does a very good job mixing fictional and historical characters in a very credible narrative. As Violet Brown would say, my stars, what a great novel!
The book is now available for other bookcrossers.

Journal Entry 9 by irus at Bragança, Bragança Portugal on Monday, September 17, 2018
It's an heavy book, but being so well recommended by Pequete, I have to give it a chance. It will stay in the TBR pile for a while, but I think it won't take long until I get it to read.

Journal Entry 10 by irus at Bragança, Bragança Portugal on Wednesday, December 05, 2018
Well, I can only second the previews reviews and say what an amazing book this is.

I loved the way Harrison Shepard almost becomes invisible in is diaries: first he is simply "the boy", then "Pancho Villa" when he goes to the United States as a teenager arriving from Mexico, "plaster boy " and "sweet buns" when working for Diego Riviera and, finally, "Soli", the name Frida calls him. This first part of the book in Mexico is full of colour, smells, details of an exotic scenario and the life with the fascinating "aztec queen" and her "frog face" husband.

But the second part, as an adult writer seen by the eyes of the faithful Violet Brown is no less moving and interesting. Even funny, sometimes, as this except of a letter to his editor shows: "Your letter made reference to my secretary-typist, to whom you plan to forward more notations. Be assured, the secretary-typist will be in intimate contact with the author, the telephone receptionist, cook, and housekeeper, as we all presently inhabit the same four-dollar shoes. With clothing-rations coupons as they are, it's a useful arrangement".

Thanks, Pequete, for insisting that I should read this book.

Journal Entry 11 by irus at Bragança, Bragança Portugal on Wednesday, December 05, 2018

Or not :)

It's almost Xmas time, but I'm sorry to tell you that I'm not your secret friend.
Just a not-so-secret person who thinks that you'll have to take a chance on this one.

Journal Entry 12 by conto at Lisboa (city), Lisboa (distrito) Portugal on Wednesday, December 12, 2018
Yay!!! A Xmas present from a non-secret friend, am I lucky or what?!!!
And so highly praised as it was in the previous JEs, I can hardly wait to get started.
But I cannot. I must behave and read some other stuff first, things I already started and/or that are being kept waiting.
Thank you so, so much, you're the best!

Journal Entry 13 by conto at Lisboa (city), Lisboa (distrito) Portugal on Friday, March 29, 2019
I dragged this one for quite a while, not only because of its 670 pages, but also because of some work stuff I had in between. Nevertheless, it does seem to me there was no need for the book to be so extensive and I do believe it would only gain by some cutting off on the edges!
This said, I did love reading this book and, difficult as it is to say more than already stated in previous JEs, I felt compelled to visit Mexico, to try one of Soli's recipes and learned a bit more about how "great" Americans and their systems are. Honestly?!
Thank you so much, once more and again, irus.

Meanwhile, discovered this book on Arvore's wishlist (wow!) therefore, that's where it'll travel next. :))

Journal Entry 14 by wingArvoreswing at Porto Santo (ilha), Madeira Portugal on Wednesday, April 03, 2019
Oh my, it's a brick! I'm worried now. But I'll get there, eventually.
Thank you so much for sharing.

Are you sure you want to delete this item? It cannot be undone.