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The Milagro Beanfield War Paperback – February 15, 2000
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The latest book club pick from Oprah
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Top Customer Reviews
But this is not a grim, revolutionary novel, full of dogma and bloodshed. It's a tale of a bunch of characters, who really just want to be left alone, backed against the wall and making their last stand.
Who couldn't cheer for Cleofas or Joe Mondragon? Who doesn't want to drop El Zopilote into the Rio Grande with cement shoes? The protagonists seduce you into their stories, and their enemies are disgusting precisely because they are so removed, because they are so ordinary, so boring.
Nichols demonstrates to us that authentic people work the land, work their jobs, lead their lives, and that their lives are worthy of storytelling. In our dominator culture, the wealthy are the powerful. Their lives, while pampered & protected, are dull, uninteresting. We only care about them when our heroes stop bending over for them and say "enough is enough." Look deeply within yourself & see just how much of Joe Mondragon you carry. Now, log off the internet & see if you can live a life worthy of Milagro.
Five stars for characterization. Five stars of making a tired plot (underdogs vs. oppressors) so much fun. Five stars for a gentle, funny read that worms its way into your heart.
(If you'd like to comment on this review, click on the "about me" link above & email me. Thanks!)
The Milagro Beanfield War, with its warm wit and characterisations, made all the little puzzle pieces I had been fumbling with come together--from the Taos real estate broker who told me at a party in White Rock that he didn't like to sell land to "those people" because "they just pull in a trailer and start raising chickens and pigs right there in their front yard--ruins the neighborhood" (he could have been a character in the book) to the reverence of my neighbors for the centuries-old practice of community care of the acequia.
The magical internal lives of the local characters and the convoluted way in which the story is told are really part of the rich texture of the place -- nothing is ever straightforward or simple. That's the beauty of it.
Read the book. The movie captures very beautifully what a movie can -- but there's so much more in the book! In particular, the female characters are even stronger, better and more interesting.
Unfortunately, the movie of the same name was severely watered down, although some characters (Kyril Motana, the state cop) came fairly close. If you enjoyed the movie, you'll probably love the book. If you thought the movie was 'overly sweet and bucolic' then be prepared for a surprise - John Nichols version is a lot more crude, rude, and lets face it, real, than Redford's movie production.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Part of trilogy describing New Mexico life. Wonderful book!Published 1 month ago by jimmy dee maisano
I requested a new edition and received a new edition in great condition. Very satisfied. Thanks!Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
Okay, so this is a sprawling novel with lots of characters and by-ways. But, guys and gals, the read is certainly worth it. Read morePublished 4 months ago by W. J. TAYLOR
Great book, part of the trilogy by Nichols. Arrived fine. Would recommend the whole trilogy to anyone.Published 5 months ago by Susie Collazo
I am a biased. I have visited the area which is the setting of the story and hiked with the author.Published 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
Many interesting side stories . Too long, too much detail for mu taste. I wanted the plot to move on. In spite opf that the book held my interest .Published 6 months ago by Little Jack Horner
amazing book, I highly recommend it. This book is a quick read, and hilarious while telling a serious story. But please, DON'T WATCH THE MOVIE!! It is terrible!!Published 7 months ago by Customer
Couldn't get past the first couple of chapters. Boring.Published 8 months ago by Jill Marshall Thomas