Notes of a Villager: A Mexican Poet's Youth and Revolution

Jose Ruben Romero, Author, John Mitchell, Editor, Ruth Mitchell De Aguilar, Editor Plover Press $9.95 (223p) ISBN 978-0-917635-05-2
Romero (1890-1952), a figure of consequence in his native Mexico, is little known in the U.S., where only one of his books has appeared previously in English translation (the diverting, picaresque tale The Futile Life of Pito Perez ). In this highly readable autobiographical novel, he describes his childhood and youth up to the age of 23, before he attained his literary reputation and his multifaceted career in the Mexican diplomatic service. Romero writes with a lyrical warmth about his family, friends and neighbors, the local buffoons and ``characters''about daily life in a provincial village unaffected by the modern age. His account includes touching, humorous portraits of eccentric grandparents and zany uncles, his growing love for literature and his early ventures into composing poetry. In describing his own sentimental education, he writes with gentle self-deprecation. But all is not sunshine, for beyond the calm of the village is the transforming 1910 revolution that brought down the murderous Porfirio Diaz and the tyrannical Huerta regime. Among the grim and terrifying episodes is Romero's betrayal by supposed comrades, when he was almost executed by a firing squad. (July)
Reviewed on: 02/27/1989
Release date: 03/01/1989
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