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A Long Petal of the Sea
by Isabel Allende and Nick Caistor and Amanda Hopkinson




Overview -
Click Here For the Autographed Copy
From the New York Times bestselling author of The House of the Spirits, this epic novel spanning decades and crossing continents follows two young people as they flee the aftermath of the Spanish Civil War in search of a place to call home.

In the late 1930s, civil war grips Spain. When General Franco and his Fascists succeed in overthrowing the government, hundreds of thousands are forced to flee in a treacherous journey over the mountains to the French border. Among them is Roser, a pregnant young widow, who finds her life intertwined with that of Victor Dalmau, an army doctor and the brother of her deceased love. In order to survive, the two must unite in a marriage neither of them desires.

Together with two thousand other refugees, they embark on the SS Winnipeg, a ship chartered by the poet Pablo Neruda, to Chile: "the long petal of sea and wine and snow." As unlikely partners, they embrace exile as the rest of Europe erupts in world war. Starting over on a new continent, their trials are just beginning, and over the course of their lives, they will face trial after trial. But they will also find joy as they patiently await the day when they will be exiles no more. Through it all, their hope of returning to Spain keeps them going. Destined to witness the battle between freedom and repression as it plays out across the world, Roser and Victor will find that home might have been closer than they thought all along.

A masterful work of historical fiction about hope, exile, and belonging, A Long Petal of the Sea shows Isabel Allende at the height of her powers.

Advance praise for A Long Petal of the Sea

"Both an intimate look at the relationship between one man and one woman and an epic story of love, war, family, and the search for home, this gorgeous novel, like all the best novels, transports the reader to another time and place, and also sheds light on the way we live now. Isabel Allende is a legend and this might be her finest book yet."--J. Courtney Sullivan, author of Saints for All Occasions

"This is a novel not just for those of us who have been Allende fans for decades, but also for those who are brand-new to her work: What a joy it must be to come upon Allende for the first time. She knows that all stories are love stories, and the greatest love stories are told by time."--Colum McCann, National Book Award-winning author of Let the Great World Spin

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Overview

Click Here For the Autographed Copy
From the New York Times bestselling author of The House of the Spirits, this epic novel spanning decades and crossing continents follows two young people as they flee the aftermath of the Spanish Civil War in search of a place to call home.

In the late 1930s, civil war grips Spain. When General Franco and his Fascists succeed in overthrowing the government, hundreds of thousands are forced to flee in a treacherous journey over the mountains to the French border. Among them is Roser, a pregnant young widow, who finds her life intertwined with that of Victor Dalmau, an army doctor and the brother of her deceased love. In order to survive, the two must unite in a marriage neither of them desires.

Together with two thousand other refugees, they embark on the SS Winnipeg, a ship chartered by the poet Pablo Neruda, to Chile: "the long petal of sea and wine and snow." As unlikely partners, they embrace exile as the rest of Europe erupts in world war. Starting over on a new continent, their trials are just beginning, and over the course of their lives, they will face trial after trial. But they will also find joy as they patiently await the day when they will be exiles no more. Through it all, their hope of returning to Spain keeps them going. Destined to witness the battle between freedom and repression as it plays out across the world, Roser and Victor will find that home might have been closer than they thought all along.

A masterful work of historical fiction about hope, exile, and belonging, A Long Petal of the Sea shows Isabel Allende at the height of her powers.

Advance praise for A Long Petal of the Sea

"Both an intimate look at the relationship between one man and one woman and an epic story of love, war, family, and the search for home, this gorgeous novel, like all the best novels, transports the reader to another time and place, and also sheds light on the way we live now. Isabel Allende is a legend and this might be her finest book yet."--J. Courtney Sullivan, author of Saints for All Occasions

"This is a novel not just for those of us who have been Allende fans for decades, but also for those who are brand-new to her work: What a joy it must be to come upon Allende for the first time. She knows that all stories are love stories, and the greatest love stories are told by time."--Colum McCann, National Book Award-winning author of Let the Great World Spin

 

Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781984820150
  • ISBN-10: 198482015X
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books
  • Publish Date: January 2020
  • Page Count: 336
  • Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.3 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.25 pounds


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BookPage Reviews

Shelf life: Talking books with Isabel Allende

Wouldn’t you love to explore a library or bookstore with your favorite author? Award-winning Chilean author Isabel Allende shares her favorite memories from among the stacks.


Tell us about your favorite library from when you were a child.
There were no libraries where kids could go in Chile during the 1940s—not even at school. My library was at home. I had an uncle who collected books, and I was allowed to read whatever I wanted. No censorship.

While researching your books, has there ever been a librarian who was especially helpful, or a surprising discovery among the stacks?
Usually I find the most valuable help from booksellers, because I tend to buy the books I use for research for my novels. When I need original documents for a historical novel, I contact librarians from the Library of Congress.

What are your bookstore rituals?
I go every day to my local bookstore (Book Passage) for coffee and browsing in the morning. First, I stop at the audiobooks shelf because I need stories for my commute. Then I talk to whichever bookseller happens to be there and get some input about new books, especially novels. Once a week, I talk to Susan in the children’s department. She keeps a list of my favorite books to give to kids when I need a gift and new releases she thinks I would like. 


Read our review of A Long Petal of the Sea by Isabel Allende.


What’s the last thing you checked out from your library or bought at your local bookstore?
A CD of Tom Hanks’ short story collection, Uncommon Type, Ann Patchett’s recent novel, The Dutch House, as well as five children’s and young adult books for my husband’s grandchildren. 

What’s your favorite library in the world?
It’s hard to name just one. I have visited several famous libraries, like the Library of Congress, where I received an award. If I had to choose, I would say the Melk Abbey library near Vienna. I was invited there to a meeting of religious leaders from all over the world and had the privilege of visiting the vault where the most valuable ancient manuscripts are kept. It was a memorable experience. I was even allowed to touch an incunable with white cotton gloves—while being watched closely by a Benedictine librarian who was almost as ancient as the book. 

Do you have a “bucket list” of bookstores and libraries you’d love to visit but haven’t yet?
Two come to mind: Shakespeare & Company in Paris and El Ateneo Grand Splendid in Buenos Aires. The first because I have been there with no time to browse properly (it’s charming!), and the second because it’s set in a beautiful, old opera house. In a city with more bookstores per capita than any other in the world, El Ateneo is considered the most stunning. 

Do you have a favorite bookstore or library from literature?
Probably the haunting library called the Cemetery of Forgotten Books in Carlos Ruis Zafón’s The Shadow of the Wind. But I am sure there are many more. 

Bookstore cats or bookstore dogs?
I like all animals, but given the choice, I would like to have dogs at my favorite bookstore, so I could pet them while I browse and have my morning coffee.

What’s your favorite snack when browsing in a bookstore?
Hopefully excellent coffee and biscotti. 


Isabel Allende is a recipient of both the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the PEN Center Lifetime Achievement Award. Her latest novel, A Long Petal of the Sea, is an epic saga set during the Spanish Civil War that follows two young people as they escape aboard poet Pablo Neruda’s real-life ship, the SS Winnipeg

Author photo by Lori Barra

 

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