The Heretic: A Novel of the Inquisition

Miguel Delibes, Author , trans. from the Spanish by Alfred MacAdam. Overlook $24.95 (350p) ISBN 978-1-58567-570-8

Winner of the 1999 Spanish literary prize, the Premio Nacional de Narrative , Delibes's assured historical novel takes place in the Spanish city of Valladolid, where Cipriano Salcedo is born on October 31, 1517, the same day Martin Luther nails his 95 theses to a church door in Wittenberg. Deprived of his mother, who dies shortly after childbirth, and alienated from his self-absorbed father, Cipriano grows up a wealthy bourgeois tormented by an overly acute conscience. He marries Teodomira, an earthy daughter of a sheep farmer who ultimately suffers a pitiful fate. After meeting theologians Agustín, Pedro Cazalla and Don Carlos de Seso, Cipriano converts to Lutheranism and quickly becomes a leading member of the local underground Protestant Reformation, working to win other converts and even traveling to Germany for the movement. When the Inquisition arrests a sect member, the entire group—including Cipriano—is exposed and all are arrested. Delibes (The Hedge , etc.) weaves an engrossing tapestry of historical and theological minutiae, but the character of Cipriano is an allegorical, everyman figure. The real protagonist of this novel is the 16th-century incarnation of the author's hometown, Valladolid, which he recreates in lucid detail. (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 12/05/2005
Release date: 05/01/2006
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 350 pages - 978-1-58567-889-1
Open Ebook - 504 pages - 978-1-4683-0481-7
Open Ebook - 504 pages - 978-1-4683-0480-0
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