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Soldados de Salamina (Coleccion Andanzas, 433) (Spanish Edition) (Spanish) Paperback – September 1, 2001

ISBN-13: 978-8483101612 ISBN-10: 8483101610 Edition: 5th

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 209 pages
  • Publisher: Tusquets Editor; 5 edition (September 1, 2001)
  • Language: Spanish
  • ISBN-10: 8483101610
  • ISBN-13: 978-8483101612
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 5.5 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #631,465 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Steven Capsuto on November 2, 2001
Format: Paperback
It's easy to see why this award-winning book -- which is selling like crazy in Spain -- has gone through eleven printings in just seven months. On the surface, it's a well-researched nonfiction story about an incident in 1939, during the final days of the Spanish Civil War, and the story of one of the men who sparked that catastrophic three-year conflict. It's also the tale of the book's creation, the journalist who wrote it, and the colorful people he met while trying to unearth the story that comprises the final two-thirds of the book.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Isabel B. de Lugo on July 18, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Un libro inteligentemente escrito, original y sensible : yo digo que un libro perfecto que cuenta una historia no tan perfecta. Me costo leer las ultimas paginas por las lagrimas. Llore por aquella guerra civil espanola que lamentablemente me recuerda el presente, las divisiones en Venezuela, lo absurdo y terrible que son las guerras. Un libro obligatorio por su contenido y para los amantes de la buena literatura, por su forma.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Carlos Vazquez Quintana on March 18, 2005
Format: Paperback
In 1937, Sánchez -Mazas a fascist writer and main ideologist of Spanish Falange was living as a refugee in the neutral embassy of Chile at Madrid, as the rebellion has caught him in the capital, ruled by the Republicans. He tempts to escape to France in a truck, but was detected in Barcelona also in the Republican side, and imprisoned. But when troops of Franco won and advanced in 1939, Sánchez- Mazas with some dozens of less important prisoners was driven into a forest to be shot before the arrival of the nationalists. Some prisoners attempted to escape. Almost none got to survive, but Sánchez -Mazas did, because although he was effectively found by a Republican soldier in a hole, it seems that man, feeling that cruel war was over and lost, and tired of killing, refused to shot him and said his mates he hadn't seen nobody. Mazas survived during some weeks hungry and suffering intense cold, aided sometimes by the inhabitants of the rural masías. Later, he joined the Franco's troops and was named a minister, mostly honorary than real.

This is the skeleton of this novel, and these facts are true, but the narration includes more. At the beginning, the author, a journalist and writer of dubious talent -truly the own Javier Cercas if you want- hears to tell this story to a son of Sánchez - Mazas, also a real figure and excellent writer, Rafael Sánchez Ferlosio. Cercas wants to know more about this strange episode, but Ferlosio, an old man something extravagant, eludes to explain more details, divagates with irony, as he has an ideology frontally opposite to his father, and refers to the soldiers of Salamina, the ancient battle when the Greeks defeated Persian fleet, as he thinks soldiers as these are capable to save mankind from disaster.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By La Hormiga Atomica on September 26, 2003
Format: Paperback
A gripping tale, about a historically almost insignificant incident in the last days of the Spanish civil war (a leader of the Spanish falange, an ideologically right-wing movement adopted by Franco's nationalist as their ideology, flees into the woods during a mass execution of high-level prisoners. Although a soldier finds him, he does not report him and therefore allows him to conserve his life) and, more importantly, the reasons behind why it happened.
I found the author's treatment of the story a good reflection of the topic's worth, and he skilfully extracts much from what could arguably have been covered in a newspaper article (largely by dedicating much of the book to the process by which he arrives at his reconstruction of those fateful days).
Unfortunately, I could not shake off the feeling that a better wordsmith and more detached observer might have been able to render the work of a higher standard. Written from the author's perspective in researching the events, Cercas seems intent on casting himself in the role of the blase and flawed character that one would expect from a 50s hollywood movie. I found this often reflected negatively on his ability to truly humanize the other characters in the story (some received much kinder treatment than others, for sure).
But overall, the book keeps a breezey pace and is a joy to read. I recommend to everyone, though I would underscore the author's insistence that it is a historical novel -- the line between fiction and fact can get blurry and I found myself doubting the truth of some of the author's retellings. But it did not detract from its overall quality, and it deserves a solid 4 stars.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By M. Lasierra Figueras on May 8, 2003
Format: Paperback
One of the best books I've read. The author's command over the narrtive techniques is amazing. He creates a story inside of another one; both of them could be real, historical events... or not. But it just does not matter, because the main aim of the book is to evoke emotions, and it sure does. Especially, it is a tribute to the old people who fought in the Spanish Civil War and are now living in the most absolute and unfair oblivion. I found it deeply moving, as well as the movie (by Spanish director David Trueba), and wonderfully written. In Spain it sold like crazy without any serious campaign behind it, all by itself. I higlly recomnend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By felix on February 19, 2012
Format: Paperback
No es novela, pero como si lo fuera. No es ensayo, pero como si lo fuera. No es artículo periodístico, pero como se lo fuera. La aventura vital del padre de Ferlosio no dejará indiferente a nadie. La brutalidad y la dureza de aqueñños años convivían perfectamente con la generosidad infinita de aquel soldado anónimo que no le delata, y con la de los payeses que le ayudan a asobrevivir. Una bella muestra literaria de todo lo que el ser humano es capaz de hacer por el ser humano, desde lo terrible a lo grandioso. La imagen del soldado bailando un pasodoble bajo la lluvia con los ojos cerrados es de esas que se te quedan instaladas en la memoria para el resto de tu vida.
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