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La Ciudad de las Bestias (Spanish Edition) (Spanish) Paperback – September 16, 2003

4.3 out of 5 stars 68 customer reviews

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About the Author

Isabel Allende is the author of twelve works of fiction, including the New York Times bestsellers Maya’s Notebook, Island Beneath the Sea, Inés of My Soul, Daughter of Fortune, and a novel that has become a world-renowned classic, The House of the Spirits. Born in Peru and raised in Chile, she lives in California.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 - 17 years
  • Grade Level: 7 - 12
  • Lexile Measure: 1030 (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Español; 1ra Edicion libro de bolsillo edition (September 16, 2003)
  • Language: Spanish
  • ISBN-10: 0060510323
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060510329
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.9 x 7.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #22,214 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Louis N. Gruber VINE VOICE on May 11, 2005
Format: Paperback
Alex Cold is a studious fifteen year old, who enjoys mountain climbing with his Dad, and playing the flute. His life is turned upside down when his Mom becomes gravely ill, and he is sent off to New York to live with his eccentric and crusty aunt Kate. Guess what? She is heading off to the Amazon to search for the "Beast"--the tropical version of Bigfoot.

Deep in the jungle, Alex meets up with Nadia, the fifteen-year old daughter of their guide, and the other members of the National Geographic expedition, and begins a journey of discovery which will lead him to test the limits of his courage and endurance. The people he encounters are not always what they appear to be, and the adventure quickly turns from a lark to a nightmare. In the course of the 400 pages Alex encounters the mysterious People of the Mist, and the legendary "Beasts," who--well, you just have to read it.

While many of the reviewers have been critical of this book, I must disagree. I found it charming, delightful, sometimes funny, and always intriguing. Toward the climactic ending I couldn't put it down. Allende writes with an innocent, mystic charm that draws you in and captivates you if you let it. It is not meant to be taken literally. It is a story of discovery, and the most important thing Alex will discover is--himself!

I recommend "City of the Beasts" highly. Reviewed by Louis N. Gruber.
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Format: Paperback
The only Allende book I couldn't finish was El Plan Infinito. All the rest have been superb. La Casa de los Espiritus was the first novel I ever read in Spanish, once I got into the rhythm of her writing it was like reading a beautiful song. La Ciudad de las Bestias is no different, and I'm delighted that she's writing books for young people. Like the Harry Potter series, I suspect these books will be every bit as popular with her adult readers.
Allende's ability and willingness to weave social themes into her books is to be applauded. All of us, no matter our age, need to be reminded that we have problems on this planet, and that we are the only ones who can solve them. We welcome her to the steadily growing group of human beings who are working to save this planet instead of destroy it. In light and joy, Nancy D.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Honestly, I was reluctant to try to read this novel instead of using all the wonderful materials I have collected through the years. I am attempting it at the strong suggestion of the University in High School program I work with. I have been pleased with the repetition of useful vocabulary, the introduction to common expressions previously untaught, the coverage of the conservation issues concerning the Amazon, the culture of the indigenous people, the development of the characters, and, oh, all right, the Magical Realism. I am using it in a Spanish V class. They agreed to continue the novel when I gave them the option. If permission can be granted to view an R rated movie, The Emerald Forest seems to be a good companion. For me there has been an incredible amount of preparation in order to present this as a class activity.
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A Kid's Review on July 24, 2005
Format: Paperback
I had to read this book for 7th grade summer reading, I looked at the back and saw what it is about. I thought it would be a self-discovery thing about a fantasy world of "The Beast", and guess what: I was right!!! But it's so much more than that, Isabel Allende makes it interesting. She also describes everything really graet. For example take one of the caves they were in when they found a dragon, she described it so you could actually picture it in your head. I'm only on chapter 17 but until now it's awesome! She talks about it like she was actually there, how the weather feels, how dense the forest is. Don't even get me started on the plot. The plot is really great, how everything fits into place with the nightmare and everthing. The only thing I can complain about is that SOMETIMES, not always, sometimes you don't really understand all the indian stuff and indian words, but then you get used to them and know what they mean. I really recomend this book for anyone, even though the adults who have read it are giving bad reviews about it.
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I teach high school Spanish and was searching for interesting reading material to build vocabulary/grammar skills in my upper tier 3rd/4th year students. I currently use mini-novels for 3rd year kids, but I had 2-3 really excelling students who wanted something more challenging with a "real plot" similar to novels they enjoy in English. The 3 students who chose to read this over the summer really loved the story line because it made them feel like they were reading a "real story with real characters that were interesting" I feel it is just the right level for a student finishing 3rd year. Kids who like the "Harry Potter" magic/fantasy genre love this. It is not a rip off of that theme, but has a more sophisticated take on ecology/fantasy/spirituality/cultural levels.

I found that I really loved the novel myself, too! Allende is an outstanding author (I've read her more famous novels) and even for an adult, the characters are engaging and the plot moves along. In fact, I have read 2 out of the series of 3 because it is light reading for me in Spanish...a fun story for summer reading without having to do "high literature" but not sacrificing solid, interesting writing.
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