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The Eagle's Throne: A Novel Hardcover – May 16, 2006


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Random House; First Edition edition (May 16, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1400062470
  • ISBN-13: 978-1400062478
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.5 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,651,496 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

An ailing Mexican president, two years into his mandated six-year term and manipulated by everyone around him, has banned oil exports to the U.S. and called for the withdrawal of all U.S. troops from occupied Colombia. In retaliation, American President Condoleezza Rice has, through the magic of an unimagined technology, shut down all of Mexico's telephone, fax and Internet communications. That's the fanciful but not entirely implausible futuristic backdrop for this corrosive political satire from Fuentes (The Old Gringo), considered Mexico's leading novelist (and one-time ambassador to France). His darkly comic tale of backbiting, double-crossing, murderous duplicity, sexual scheming and outright assassination is primarily epistolary, and it's a format that suits Fuentes's flowery prose style, though the voices of his various characters tend to blur into one another. Readers with even a smidgeon of familiarity with Mexico's unkempt political traditions will wallow in this caustic indictment. (May 16)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Bookmarks Magazine

Carlos Fuentes, author of more than 20 books (including The Old Gringo and The Death of Artemio Cruz), knows politics intimately: he served in various government positions in Mexico and as Mexico's ambassador to France in the mid-1970s. The Eagle's Throne, a brilliantly scathing satire on presidential succession, is among Fuentes's best work. Inspired by Machiavelli's The Prince and other texts, Fuentes personalizes power plays through letters in which characters scheme, betray, plot murders, reveal their sexual peccadilloes, and succumb to desperation. A few critics thought that the epistolary form distanced the reader from the characters and plot, but overall, few better descriptions of the universal struggle for power exist.

Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Enrique Torres VINE VOICE on September 21, 2007
Format: Paperback
I must admit I'm biased when it comes to Carlos Fuentes and his books; I love then all, even the epic, erudite, novel I've been reading for three or four years and have yet to finish entitled Terra Nostra (Latin American Literature Series). I've read nearly every book published by Mexico's eminent literary scholar and author, Carlos Fuentes, including one of my favorites Christopher Unborn, the historical exploration of Spain and it's multicultural influence on the new world entitled The Buried Mirror: Reflections on Spain and the New World, the brilliantly interconnected nine short stories that comprise the novel The Crystal Frontier, his epic, scathing, political examination of Mexico entitledA New Time for Mexico and of course, his classicsThe Old Gringo: A Novel and The Death of Artemio Cruz: A Novel are only a few in English I've read; I've also read many lesser known titles that are in Spanish and that unfortuantely have never been translated. I mention this so that you know I am well versed in the style of Carlos Fuentes.Read more ›
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Giordano Bruno on May 11, 2010
Format: Paperback
Carlos Fuentes has always written lurid melodrama - written it well, if you will - for an audience of readers accustomed to strong flavors. "The Eagle's Throne" is as lurid as any reader could wish, as blatant as a telenovela, and Fuetes's relentless excess has begun to wear out my patience.

It's a futurist novel, set in 2020. The Mexican government has defied "el Norte" and supported OPEC in raising oil prices. The USA has deliberately snafued all satellite communications in Mexico - no e-mail, no cell phones, etc. What a good excuse for the writing of an epistolary novel! Unfortunately, epistolary novels are hard to do well. The character of each character HAS to be evidenced not just in the sense but also in the style of each letter writer. "By your style ye shall be known!" Fuentes doesn't achieve that sort of individuation. His correspondents all sound just like him.

Otherwise, it's an interesting concept, a means of depicting the inner workings of Mexico's governmental class in near-apocalyptic terms. The book reminds me of Sinclair Lewis's great futurist novel "It Can't Happen Here". But the lurid and languid sexual themes weigh so heavily on the satire! Mexico's governmental class IS lurid and loathsome, and corruption IS both endemic and hapless. Not even the next tea-flavored Republican administration in the USA can approach the banal corruption and venal inhumanity of some of the past Mexican administrations, or of the fictional rulers in Fuentes's vision of 2020. But I can't say that Fuentes has offered any insights into "why" or "what to do about it".
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By R. Kay on July 27, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This political satire holds your attention. What makes the reading a bit tedious is the fact that the styles of the various correspondents whose letters constitute the narrative, are not well differentiated, possibly due to translation. While the Mexican political chicanery depicted may seem extreme at times, our own Watergate, Monica L. and Weapons of Mass Destruction do not pale in comparison.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This fascinating novel provides an interesting perspective on Mexico's political system. As a political thriller, it surpasses the novels of Tom Clancy, Thor Heyerdahl and WEB Griffin. I could not stop reading this book until I finished it. There were so many twists and turns, that I was taken completely by surprise in the last chapters. I consider this book a "must read" for anyone who is interested in Mexican politics, Carlos Fuentes or exciting books.
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By Bernadette Hackett on August 20, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
always love Carlos Fuentes.
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