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The Fountains of Silence by Ruta Sepetys

The Fountains of Silence (edition 2019)

by Ruta Sepetys (Author)

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13811134,864 (3.66)5
At the Castellana Hilton in 1957 Madrid, eighteen-year-old Daniel Matheson connects with Ana Moreno through photography and fate as Daniel discovers the incredibly dark side of the city under Generalissimo Franco's rule.
Title:The Fountains of Silence
Authors:Ruta Sepetys (Author)
Info:Philomel Books (2019), Edition: 1st Edition, 512 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Read in 2019

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The Fountains of Silence by Ruta Sepetys



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Two stories intersect: Daniel is a wealthy Texan teenager who is visiting Madrid with his parents. Ana, the daughter of Republican parents who died during the Spanish Civil War, is a maid at the hotel where Daniel and his parents are staying. The hardships and dangers of daily life in Franco's Spain, even after the war is over, are brought to life through the events that happen to these two characters and their families. An important subplot is the mysterious orphanage where Ana's cousin works and observes unsettling goings-on. The bulk of the story takes place during the 1950's, and then resumes in the 70's. ( )
  sleahey | Nov 6, 2019 |
I’ve tried Sepetys more than once and never seem to get very far. Her prose strikes me as lacklustre and laboured. It doesn’t help that this novel is written in the present tense, which I’m not a fan of. I know high praise has been sung for this one. I just do not like this author’s work. I am unlikely to pick up a book by her again. ( )
  fountainoverflows | Nov 5, 2019 |
Wow, Ruta Sepetys delivers time and again! She has a talent for taking a piece of "little known history" (not known to us American dunces anyways) and weaving together a brilliant young adult historical fiction novel that is impossible to put down. Madrid, Spain in 1957 might seem glamorous and "upcoming" to American tourists, but it's hiding dark secrets. The dictator, General Franco has ruled with an iron fist and life for kids and families who had members convicted of treason, have never slept easy. There is no freedom of religion, girls must be modest, and incomes must not increase. At first, the young Texan, Daniel is enamored with it all; the sights, the sounds, the food. But the more he gets to know his housekeeper, Ana, and "her Spain," the more he becomes determined to capture what's wrong with his camera and expose it to the world. Intriguing and delightful; I genuinely enjoyed all the perspectives and learned much more about Spanish history. Another great novel from a talented young adult author! ( )
  ecataldi | Nov 4, 2019 |
The Fountains of Silence quite a cracker! I read it via the Pigeonhole app where I received a stave a day for twelve days. I looked forward to receiving each instalment every day, I was so immersed in the story and the characters’ lives.

It’s set in 1957 in Madrid during its communist era under the dictatorship of Francisco Franco. Tourist Daniel Matheson, son of a Texas oil tycoon father and a Spanish mother, is visiting with his parents. Daniel is a keen photographer, even so far as wanting to make a career of it against the wishes of his father. He meets a local girl, Ana, who is a maid in the hotel where he is staying and, through her, various members of her family, including Rafa and his friend, Fuga who have dreams of bullfighting fame. As Daniel takes his photos, he becomes gradually aware of the darkness running beneath the surface during this turbulent and tyrannical period of time in Spanish history, a history I knew little about but now know a lot more!

I found this a fascinating and highly interesting read. It’s beautifully written and well researched, combining historical fact with fiction to make an absorbing and captivating tale with some believable and likeable characters. And the ending just ties it all up wonderfully! This is the first book I’ve read by Ruta Sepetys and it won’t be my last. Highly recommended. ( )
  VanessaCW | Oct 5, 2019 |
I thoroughly enjoyed Between Shades of Grey and Salt to the Sea. In fact they are two of the novels I most often recommend, so I had high expectations for the latest book by Ruta Sepetys. I'm happy to say it met them.

Like those other two books, this one sheds a light on a hidden part of history, but it does so more gradually.

Like in Salt to the Sea, there were multiple narrators. I felt they were all necessary for the telling of this story, and I liked them all, though initially I found one less sympathetic than the others.

The danger the characters faced here was not as overt as in the other books, but there was a tension, a sense of it lingering in the air. And while I'd describe the other two novels as being about a struggle to survive, I'd describe this one as being about a struggle to live, for what kind of life is it if you can't ask questions or even hope for anything better?

I enjoyed this and have already recommended it. I'm thankful for the early read from BookishFirst, and I liked it so much that I've purchased the hardback. ( )
  ang709 | Oct 1, 2019 |
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