The Spanish language has to its credit literary texts that garnered universal acclaim. So, if you plan to immerse yourself or deepen your Spanish studies, you can’t miss out on these books. 🤓
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Today we will be talking about Eva Luna. This remarkable novel will serve to show you our workshops on Spanish language literary classics😁.
Discover this incredible story by Isabel Allende and expand your Spanish language skills. 🙌
Let’s get started!
Eva Luna, published in 1987, is the third novel by the famous Chilean writer Isabel Allende. It tells the story of the life adventure of Eva Luna, a young orphan. She experiences many varied situations in a Latin American country that is never named.
The novel takes us through the passion and inventiveness of the charismatic Eva Luna. After living in a brothel as the protégée of Humberto Naranjo, a guerrilla leader, and cohabiting with an Arab man, she achieves great fame and recognition for the stories she writes.
But Eva Luna’s imagination is not a fire that has begun to burn on its own. At the novel’s beginning, we get to know Consuelo, Eva Luna’s mother, who was raised by Indians and later entered a convent.
After reaching working age, Consuelo is hired as a maid for a toxicologist doctor who specialises in snakebites. One of her patients is a yellow-eyed Indian, with whom Consuelo falls in love due to constantly caring for him. As a result of this love, Eva Luna is born.
However, shortly afterwards, Consuelo accidentally meets her death, leaving Eva Luna an orphan, at a very young age.
Parallel to Consuelo’s story; the novel narrates the events of a family of Austrian origin: the Carlés, whose head, Professor Lukas Carlé, seems to have a screw loose. He is also incredibly strict with his students and even more so with his children.
To escape the family madness and the war, Rolf Carlé, the middle son, is sent to South America by his mother to stay with relatives. There, young Rolf will experience his adventures, including a love triangle with his two cousins.
Returning to Eva Luna, we see her in the custody of her godmother, another of the doctor’s maids. Soon after, however, she is abandoned, and amid her distress, she meets Humberto Naranjo, a guerrilla leader. He takes her as his protégé and takes her to live in a brothel, as he cannot take care of her directly due to his subversive activities.
It is here that Eva Luna discovers her enormous talent for inventing stories. This creative capacity will allow her to emerge and overcome numerous obstacles as if she were a Caribbean Scheherazade.
In the brothel, Eva Luna befriends an endearing character: Melecio, “a woman trapped in a man’s body”, in her own words. Melecio, who leads a double life, will be an essential stimulus for our protagonist.
Life in the brothel ends when a police raid undoes the shady business. Once again homeless, Eva Luna is helped by Riad Halabi, a man with Arab roots who takes her in and convinces her to pursue her dreams as a writer and storyteller.
The novel reaches its climax when, sometime later, Eva Luna and Rolf meet after a meeting on a television channel. The two have excellent chemistry, which later develops into lasting love.
Eva Luna is a novel of growth, love, and adventure that will leave no one indifferent. It is one of the most widely read and translated books by its author, and a gripping story that you should not miss in your learning of the Spanish language.
Isabel Allende is a Chilean writer who is also a US citizen. She was born in 1942 in Lima, Peru, where her father held a diplomatic post.
Following his parents’ separation, he travelled to Chile, where he spent an important part of his life.
During the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet, she went into exile in Venezuela, a country she was very fond of.
Although Eva Luna never mentions where the story takes place, the writer confessed that the novel’s actions occur precisely in the Caribbean country during an interview.
His first novel, The House of the Spirits, published in 1982, was favourably received by critics and the public, particularly for its approach to magical realism. It has often been compared to Gabriel García Márquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude.
Since then, he has published novels, short stories, memoirs, and plays. Her books have sold 70 million copies and translated into more than 40 languages. As a result, Isabel Allende is the world’s most widely read living Spanish-language writer.
He has also received important awards for his literary career, such as the Chilean National Literature Prize and the Hans Christian Andersen Prize for Literature. He is also a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
Several of his books have been adapted for film and television. For example, the House of the Spirits, 1993, directed by Bille August and starring Meryl Streep, Glenn Close, Winona Ryder, and Jeremy Irons.
He has lived in the United States since 1988 and has been a US citizen since 2003.
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Ginnette Di Damaso
Spanish Express Blogger