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La fiesta del chivo (Spanish Edition) (Spanish) Paperback – March 1, 2012

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Vargas Llosa attempts to give a historic explanation of the cruel tyranny of the dictatorship of Rafael Trujillo in the Dominican Republic in his latest novel. Through Urania, the daughter of one of Trujillo's cronies who returns to her native Santo Domingo after many years of absence, Vargas Llosa narrates a short period of stagnation and corruption in the Dominican Republic. The Trujillista era is one of infamy and vileness, in which psychopaths and murderers offered the dictator their wives and daughters for orgies and sadistic acts of deflowering in exchange for political favors. In his usual style, Vargas Llosa skillfully uses language to demystify subjects that could easily offend. The book is undoubtably more fiction than history, yet it is obvious that the author did ample research on the period. In spite of the repugnance readers may feel toward the fictional characters, Vargas Llosa does not make a direct judgment of this abominable time. Even in the absence of personal opinion, he successfully portrays a tragic era that left a lasting imprint on the history of the Dominican Republic. Highly recommended for public and academic libraries and all bookstores. Liliana Wendorff, Fayetteville Technical Community Coll., NC
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.


If the novel didnt contain so many touches of reality it would seem like a fable of human malice. Juan Cruz, Communications Director, Santillana Group. It is, undoubtedly, one of the greatest literary works of the year. --Emma Rodriguez, El Mundo

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Alfaguara (March 1, 2012)
  • Language: Spanish
  • ISBN-10: 9681906993
  • ISBN-13: 978-9681906993
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 1.3 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (140 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #163,033 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

MARIO VARGAS LLOSA was born in Arequipa, Peru, in 1936. In 1958 he earned a scholarship to study in Madrid, and later he lived in Paris. His first story collection, The Cubs and Other Stories, was published in 1959. Vargas Llosa's reputation grew with the publication in 1963 of The Time of the Hero, a controversial novel about the politics of his country. The Peruvian military burned a thousand copies of the book. He continued to live abroad until 1980, returning to Lima just before the restoration of democratic rule.

A man of politics as well as literature, Vargas Llosa served as president of PEN International from 1977 to 1979, and headed the government commission to investigate the massacre of eight journalists in the Peruvian Andes in 1983.

Vargas Llosa has produced critical studies of García Márquez, Flaubert, Sartre, and Camus, and has written extensively on the roots of contemporary fiction. For his own work, he has received virtually every important international literary award. Vargas Llosa's works include The Green House (1968) and Conversation in the Cathedral (1975), about which Suzanne Jill Levine for The New York Times Book Review said: "With an ambition worthy of such masters of the 19th-century novel as Balzac, Dickens and Galdós, but with a technical skill that brings him closer to the heirs of Flaubert and Henry James . . . Mario Vargas Llosa has [created] one of the largest narrative efforts in contemporary Latin American letters." In 1982, Farrar, Straus and Giroux published Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter to broad critical acclaim. In 1984, FSG published the bestselling The War of the End of the World, winner of the Ritz Paris Hemingway Award. The Real Life of Alejandro Mayta was published in 1986. The Perpetual Orgy, Vargas Llosa's study of Flaubert and Madame Bovary, appeared in the winter of 1986, and a mystery, Who Killed Palomino Molero?, the year after. The Storyteller, a novel, was published to great acclaim in 1989. In 1990, FSG published In Praise of the Stepmother, also a bestseller. Of that novel, Dan Cryer wrote: "Mario Vargas Llosa is a writer of promethean authority, making outstanding fiction in whatever direction he turns" (Newsday).

In 1990, Vargas Llosa ran for the presidency of his native Peru. In 1994, FSG published his memoir, A Fish in the Water, in which he recorded his campaign experience. In 1994, Vargas Llosa was awarded the Cervantes Prize, the Spanish-speaking world's most distinguished literary honor, and, in 1995, the Jerusalem Prize, which is awarded to writers whose work expresses the idea of the freedom of the individual in society. In 1996, Death in the Andes, Vargas Llosa's next novel, was published to wide acclaim. Making Waves, a collection of his literary and political essays, was published in 1997; The Notebooks of Don Rigoberto, a novel, was published in 1998; The Feast of the Goat, which sold more than 400,000 copies in Spanish-language, was published in English in 2001; The Language of Passion, his most recent collection of nonfiction essays on politics and culture, was published by FSG in June 2003. The Way to Paradise, a novel, was published in November 2003; The Bad Girl, a novel, was published in the U.S. by FSG in October, 2007. His most recent novel, El Sueño del Celta, will be published in 2011 or 2012. Two works of nonfiction are planned for the near future as well.

Customer Reviews

One of the most impacting books I have ever read!
Juvenal Llanes
This story is not only of concern for people from, or related to, the Dominican Republic: it is great literature.
Guillermo Maynez
Very well written (I read in Spanish) and well organized.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

80 of 82 people found the following review helpful By Carlos R. Lugo-Ortiz on May 6, 2000
Format: Paperback
'La fiesta del chivo' es varios textos al mismo tiempo. Por un lado, es una cronica ficcionalizada del ultimo dia de la vida de Rafael Leonidas Trujillo, el cruel dictador que goberno a la Republica Dominicana durante 31 anos hasta que fue matado (o ajusticiado) en 1961, y de la terrible represion y habiles manipulaciones politicas de Joaquin Balaguer (el 'miura' de la novela, segun el mismo Vargas Llosa) que siguieron a los hechos; por otro, es una historia, tambien ficcionalizada, del trujillato a traves de diversas voces de allegados al dictador. Mas significativamente, sin embargo, 'La fiesta del chivo' es una larga meditacion sobre la corrupcion que a muchos niveles el poder o el acceso a este conlleva. Vargas Llosa ha escrito, pues, una gran novela que se inserta muy bien en la tradicion de novelas sobre dictadores escritas por otros grandes escritores latinoamericanos, como Asturias, Carpentier, Garcia Marquez y Roa Bastos, entre otros.
La era de Trujillo fue, ciertamente, horrible. Sin embargo, en 'La fiesta del chivo', la figura de Trujillo parece hiperbolica, una idea feroz mas que un ser humano egocentrista y corrupto. Tal hiperbole resulta adecuada en, por ejemplo, 'El otono del patriarca', de Garcia Marquez, pero en 'La fiesta del chivo' es contraproducente, pues oculta la cara humana de lo que categorizamos como 'el mal'.
Si lo anterior es una falla de fondo, la estructura de la novela es, sin embargo, impecable. Nadie como Vargas Llosa, en ninguna lengua, para jugar con el tiempo en la narrativa. 'La fiesta del chivo' recuerda la estructura de 'Lituma en los Andes', con sus saltos hacia atras y hacia adelante y su entrecruzamiento de distintas voces para dar una vision completa de los hechos tratados.
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39 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Adriana Villanueva on May 5, 2000
Format: Paperback
"La Fiesta del Chivo" de Mario Vargas Llosa es la clase de novela que una vez finalizada la última página sentimos haber terminado una obra que marcará pauta, porque "la Historia del Chivo" es más que la historia del regreso de una traumatizada mujer a reencontrarse con los fantasmas del pasado; es más que la historia de un complot de valientes hombres para derrocar a un tirano; es más que la historia de Rafael Leonidas Trujillo, el omnipotente de República Dominicana; "la Fiesta del Chivo" es la radiografía de tantos gobiernos suramericanos del siglo XX en los cuales la norma fue concentración de poder durante largos años, valiéndose de todo tipo de abusos y artimañas para no ceder el mando. En los últimos años los latinoamericanos pensábamos haber superado los caudillismos y las dictaduras pero lamentablemente en Venezuela y en Perú está concentración del poder se está volviendo a ver, y leer "La Fiesta del Chivo" más que una experiencia escalofriante es una lección que aprender. ¡Ojo pelao!
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59 of 66 people found the following review helpful By Fiallo on April 1, 2000
Format: Paperback
¿Por qué regresa Urania Cabral a la isla que juró no volver a pisar? ¿Por qué sigue vacía y llena de miedo desde los catorce años? ¿Por qué no ha tenido un sólo amor?
En la Fiesta del Chivo, la esperada y magistral nueva novela de Mario Vargas Llosa, asistimos a un doble entorno. Mientras Urania visita a su padre en Santo Domingo, volvemos a 1961, cuando la capital dominicana aún se llamaba Ciudad Trujillo. Allí un hombre tiraniza a tres millones de personas sin saber que se gesta una maquiavélica transición a la democracia.
Vargas Llosa, un clásico contemporáneo, relata el fin de una Era dando voz, entre otros personajes históricos, al impecable e implacable generalísimo Trujillo y al sosegado y ambicioso Doctor Joaquín Balaguer que había de ser todavía, cuarenta años después (para desgracia de los dominicanos), el Sumo Pontífica de la política dominicana.
Con un ritmo y una precisión difícilmente superables, este peruano universal muestra que la política puede consistir en abrirse camino entre cadáveres, y que un ser inocente puede convertirse en un regalo truculento.
El escritor involucra en acciones inmorales a familias ligadas a la tiranía, muchas de las cuales se han dado por aludidas. Con algunos de los aspectos tratados en la novela, Vargas Llosa "irrita a miembros de familias poderosas" que se sienten "casi retratados" en personajes de la novela a quienes el autor involucra en orgías sexuales y otras actuaciones inmorales registradas durante la época de Trujillo.
Un libro para no perder la raíces. Una novela que ya es historia. Una historia que sin terminar es ya novela.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By J. Cruz-Ramon on July 2, 2000
Format: Paperback
Soy dominicano. El retrato de esa Era maldita, vergonzosa, infernal, negada por muchos, echada al olvido, ha sido revivido. El realismo profundo del paisaje, la intensidad de emociones, tal vez el dolor, tal vez la verguenza de tal recuerdo, al menos el heroismo redentor de los ajusticiadores, todo ello despierta los mas profundos sentimientos, especialmente en aquellos que vivieron aquellos dias. Ahi quedo grabada, en una obra magnifica, la historia de la mas malvada de las dictaduras latinoamericanas. Ficcion en algunos detalles, pero verdad en las crueldades, malicia diabolica, extrema adulacion y arrogancia. Ahi queda gradaba para la posteridad, la verdadera historia de un monstruo. Historia que debe ser contada para que jamas se vuelva a repetir. Gracias Vargas Llosa
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