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Aztec Autumn Audio, Cassette – July, 1997
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Historical novelist Gary Jennings returns to the time and place of his international bestseller Aztec one generation after the conquistadors have all but destroyed the culture. The once-shining capital city of Tenochtitlan has been renamed Mexico City. Eighteen-year-old Tenamaxtli, the novel's hero, has traveled with his mother from the northern region, where they have been kept abreast of the progress of the malignant, marauding, disease-bearing Spanish. In the course of witnessing the execution of an old Aztec, Tenamaxtli's mother reveals that the victim is, in fact, her son's father. Everything is in place for vengeance, and over the novel's next several years, Tenamaxtli organizes an ill-fated insurrection, enjoying many sexual adventures along the way.
Told plainly and at some remove, Jennings has reserved the fancier footwork for an excursion into Aztec culture, creating a detailed tapestry of a struggling, vanquished race. Readers familiar with Mexican history will welcome the rich details of this vengeance drama; those new to it will be impressed by Jennings's exhaustive research.
The narrative reads like a journal, its language meant to evoke some generic past. Perhaps this is a distancing device, allowing readers to focus on the rich weave of cultural and historic elements rather than the carnage, cruelty, and genocide that characterize this unhappy piece of Mexican history. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
The sequel to the author's internationally best-selling Aztec (1982) returns to the Mexico of the conquistadors. The previous novel enveloped the reader in the traditions and customs of Aztec society before and during the bloody Spanish conquest. The story as it now unfolds finds us in postconquest Mexico, events now narrated by a young Aztec man whose uncle is an esteemed nobleman. The Spanish conquerors have settled in to run a tightly controlled enterprise, and the novel springs into action when the young hero decides no other course is available to him than to seek revenge for the foul murder of his father by the conquerors. What the reader is witness to in these compelling pages, then, is the avenger's careful gathering together of an insurrectionary movement. Jennings' ability to marshal the results of considerable research into a smoothly flowing, never sluggish narrative is remarkable; here he gives appreciators of historical fiction something to relish. Brad Hooper --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
It is a shame to rate this tile solely for the amount of typos that plague almost every page, but what good is a book if it can not be properly read. If you are interested in this title, DO NOT get the electronic version, you will regret it!
If you are also an admirer of Jennings, you will probably enjoy this novel. Putting aside its leaps and its somewhat overstretched happenings, it does give one a picture of the time and it does introduce us to several interesting characters. I think you will find this a worthwhile read though it is not a "can't miss" reading. Try a few chapters and I suspect you will read the whole book through. I am not intending to read the two additional sequels that Jennings has written however. Two are enough.
Most of the book is concerned with Juan's adventures in preparation for leading his revolution. The actual revolution, in terms of battles and such, is left to the very end. As such this is more the story of a man's life instead of a war chronicle. We learn the joy and concerns of Juan and his people. Along the way, we also learn something of the native cultures of the Americas in the generation that lived through the conquistadors.
This is an entertaining book, if somewhat graphic in terms of sex, cruelty and violence.
I still recommend this book. I think it is much better read back to back with the first book in the series. Turning the last page of "Aztec" then opening the first page of "Aztec Autumn" is worth the price of the book.