- Hardcover: 224 pages
- Publisher: MacAdam/Cage; First Edition edition (July 1, 1997)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1878448765
- ISBN-13: 978-1878448767
- Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.3 x 1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 11.5 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 5 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,832,670 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Perdido Hardcover – July 1, 1997
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From Library Journal
What drives Will Sawyer to pursue the truth about the death 20 years before of a young white girl in the New Mexico village of Guadeloupe never becomes clear. Neither does the truth itself. What is clear is that the townspeople, including Will's girlfriend, Lisa, do not support his desire to dig into past events and disturb those who were involved. Set in the same village as Collignon's first novel, The Journal of Antonio Montoya (LJ 5/1/96), Perdido describes tense relationships between ethnic and racial groups while delving into the concept of identity and providing subtle touches of magical realism. Eventually finding the solution to the mystery, however, may be of the utmost importance to some readers. Others will merely settle back and thoroughly enjoy the journey on which Collignon takes them. For all fiction collections.?Faye A. Chadwell, Univ. of Oregon, Eugene
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Collignon follows up his first book, The Journal of Antonio Montoya (1996), with another slight but rather wonderful novel. Will Sawyer, one of the few Anglos living in a small New Mexico town, becomes intrigued with the story of a young Anglo woman who was found hanging from a bridge more than two decades before. Will's innocent questions regarding the death recall an event that many of the villagers would rather not remember, and the violence that follows leaves one man brutally beaten and one man dead. While some readers may be frustrated by Collignon's technique of dropping the reader into the middle of the story, leaving both the past and the future unexplained, those who don't mind a little mystery in their literary fiction (one never learns, for example, what brought Will to New Mexico 18 years before or how and why the girl hanging from the bridge died) will discover a well-written novel, whose simple and direct narrative contrasts ironically with the multitude of secrets that burden the lives of its well-drawn characters. Nancy Pearl
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Like all good, even great literature, Perdido moves through several levels. There's a single man who's looking for attachment. The modest hero has and loses a place in the ancient community, a traditional adobe house, an image of the Virgen de Guadalupe, a promiscuous girlfriend, and a business partner who is a good friend powerless against culture. He's Anglo among Hispanos. The Hispanos--linked in complex, roiling families--deal with the present only through the rich, confusing past or pasts.
But that's not a description to entice new readers for a novel that deserves to be read. There are other key elements: the naked young woman found hanging from the bridge twenty-years before and a former sheriff's deputy who is dying of cancer, whose secret is aired, and who knows how to get even.
How can we discern America's heart at the close of our century? Perdido tells us to look to an isolated corner of northern New Mexico and think about the 18th century.