Adam in Eden

Carlos Fuentes, Author, Alejandro Branger, Translator, Ethan Shaskan Bumas, Translator
Carlos Fuentes, trans. from the Spanish by E. Shaskan Bumas and Alejandro Branger. Dalkey Archive, $20 (220p) ISBN 978-1-56478-796-5
Reviewed on: 11/12/2012
Release date: 01/01/2013
This satire of contemporary Mexican society by the celebrated late Mexican novelist and critic centers on Adam Gorozpe, a well-connected Mexico City lawyer and businessman. He is married to Priscila Holguin, the daughter of a wealthy bakery magnate with whom the couple resides. Adam also keeps a mistress named “L” and with her feels happy and relaxed, in complete opposition to how he feels with his wife. His brother-in-law, Abelardo, wants to be a writer, which angers Abelardo’s father. However, Abelardo is granted an audience with the great poet Maximino Sol, who urges him to join Sol’s camp if he wants his work noticed. Instead, Abelardo gets work writing soap operas. Elsewhere in the city, an 11-year-old named the Boy-God has started to preach at a busy intersection and, much to Adam’s chagrin, the newly sprouted shantytowns have been dubbed “Gorozpevilles.” Adam Gongora, a high-ranking official, has begun to abuse his power, drawing the ire of namesake Gorozpe. But Gongora’s interest in Priscila sets in motion events that test Gorozpe to the limit. This is a minor work by a major author, but Fuentes’s humor and keen eye make it quite rewarding. (Dec.)
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