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Zorro: A Novel (P.S.) by Isabel Allende
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Zorro: A Novel (P.S.) (original 2005; edition 2006)

by Isabel Allende

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2,452872,511 (3.58)123
Member:kakadoo202
Title:Zorro: A Novel (P.S.)
Authors:Isabel Allende
Info:Harper Perennial (2006), Edition: Rep Tra, Paperback, 416 pages
Collections:Your library
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Zorro by Isabel Allende (2005)

  1. 20
    The Princess Bride by William Goldman (Alliebadger)
    Alliebadger: Both full of romance and adventure, and both fantastically written. Who doesn't love a daring swashbuckler?
  2. 20
    The Mark of Zorro by Johnston McCulley (jseger9000)
    jseger9000: McCulley created Zorro
  3. 00
    Daughter of Fortune by Isabel Allende (Alliebadger)
    Alliebadger: Both beautifully written, and Daughter of Fortune's Zorro references are hard to miss. :^)
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» See also 123 mentions

English (74)  Spanish (5)  Dutch (3)  French (1)  Italian (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  German (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (87)
Showing 1-5 of 74 (next | show all)
I got the feeling while reading this book that Allende was intimidated by the character of Zorro and she kept skirting around him, spending her time instead building the characters and world that shaped Diego de la Vega and inspired Zorro. At other times I felt like she was too wrapped up in paying homage to Douglas Fairbanks and it seemed like she tried to merge the Black Pirate (1926) and the Mark of Zorro (1920) into one timeline/one character. The first 200 hundred pages take too long to get into the action. By the time Zorro had emerged I was ready for the book to be over. ( )
  pussreboots | Oct 25, 2014 |
Zorro, By Isabel Allende

Isabel Allende's tale of the legendary defender of justice, the famed masked crusader Zorro, takes its time in the telling. In addition to following his life from birth to old age, Allende sprinkles her text with historical background, commentary about the ways of men, women and governments. While it is a story worthy of the time it takes to read, it does require a certain patience and taste to appreciate fully.

Refreshingly centered on a character who hales from a Hispanic heritage, this story meanders from the shores of Alta California, when Los Angeles was a mere pueblo, to the battlefields of Europe during the reign of Napoleon Bonaparte and back again, coming full circle, as the “eye-witness” first-person narrator peers omnisciently into the minds of characters historical and fictitious. Reading the motives and thoughts of all, we are privy to the pure and impure thoughts of everyone we meet. Nevertheless, the story remains firmly grated, allowing for the steamiest of scenes to occur “off-screen” and leaving them open to the reader's interpretation.

Although there is a lot of sword-play, and some very real discussions of the horrors of the slave trade, the mistreatment of Native populations in both the Caribbean and the American West, and war, the violence is tame.

The only disappointment rests in its failure to recount the true adventures of daring-do familiar to fans of Zorro as recounted in other popular versions of the story. ( )
  lps3 | Jun 20, 2014 |
The first section of the novel, which relates Zorro's childhood in Alta California at the turn of the 18th & 19th centuries is the best part. I was fully engaged. Once Diego (aka Zorro)at 15 is sent off to Barcelona to learn to be a Spanish gentleman, the novel starts to weaken. 2/3 of the way through I have the impression that Allende has lost control of her story telling powers. Surely, this is a genre spoof, as she duly reminds us at times when there is a damsel in distress. Considering the strength of its beginnings, this is a disappointment. She could have written a swashbuckling tale with gravitas I think but chose in the end to write a tale that is neither. ( )
  Paulagraph | May 25, 2014 |
Reminded me a little of the bodice-rippers my mother used to read by the Baroness D'Orczy - Captain Blood, Scaramouche. Not terrible really, and some nice period detail - just not my cup of tea. ( )
  CSRodgers | May 3, 2014 |
I listened to the audio book - all 13 hours! And it is indeed an epic historical fiction origins story of Zorro. Well done, but I imagine it would be a bit plodding if I'd had to read it instead of listened to it driving cross country. ( )
  ResAliens | Feb 6, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 74 (next | show all)
This hard-charging style, nicely captured by Margaret Sayers Peden's translation, is one of Allende's strengths: she dashes off long, sweeping paragraphs that dance with energy. Her prose is casually sensuous (''power was passed from hand to hand like a coin''), and her characters are large and archetypal, cut from mythic patterns. Mischievous Don Diego, the future Zorro, and his ''milk brother,'' Bernardo, move through the California landscape like Western versions of Tom and Huck.
added by SimoneA | editNew York Times, Max Byrd (May 15, 2005)
 
Reckless, unstable, attention-seeking, hysterical, sexually provocative, given to histrionic gestures, and with at least a split, dual or possibly even a multiple personality, Zorro is the archetypal neurotic-as-hero. He also wears a mask. Obviously, out in the real world, you'd lock him up and throw away the key. On the page, though, he's absolutely irresistible.

The story of Diego de la Vega, the son of an aristocratic Spanish landowner and a Native American Shoshone warrior, who becomes Zorro while traveling the world with his dependable sidekick Bernardo, is clearly a perfect fit for the author of The House of the Spirits and The Stories of Eva Luna.

 
…Allende wants to have some fun, and in this she succeeds with a variety of spunk and good cheer.

…I am amazed at how enjoyable a picaresque novel can be, particularly one imbued with swashbuckling, swordplay, honor, hidden desire, unlikely coincidence and a good old-fashioned villain. Such elements are a reminder of the attractions of one of the main strains of world literature that starts with Don Quixote.

…the book has plenty of what Hollywood would call non-stop action, and this is told with a pleasure so keen on the author's part that it's difficult not to be swept up in it.

 

» Add other authors (15 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Isabel Allendeprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Peden, Margaret SayersTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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This is the story of Diego de la Vega and of how he became the legendary Zorro.
Let us begin at the beginning, at an event without which Diego de la Vega would not have been born.
Quotations
„Didvyriškumas – nedėkingas amatas, dažniausiai lemiantis ankstyvą žūtį, todėl vilioja fanatikus arba, liguistai besižavinčius mirtimi.“; „Indėnai negalėjo suvokti, kodėl baltieji garbina ant kryžiaus nukankintą žmogų ir kodėl reikia atsižadėti malonumų šiame pasaulyje dėl tariamo gėrio kitame.“;
„ kaip tai gali atsitikti, kad jį, tokį menkystą, mylinti pati gražiausia pasaulio mergina, ir ji atsakė nežinanti, jog moteris sunku suprasti. Paskiau, šelmiškai mirktelėjusi, pridūrė, kad bet kuri moteris įsimylėtų vien tik su ją kalbantį vyrą.“; „Vaikystė – nelaimingas laikotarpis, pilnas nepagrįstų baimių, tokių kaip įsivaizduojamų pabaisų ir pajuokos baimės.“;
„Širdis – užgaidi, kartais staigiai persimaino, tačiau švelni seseriška meilė visada pastovi.“;

„Esu girdėjusi, kad kai kurie išradėjai svajoja sukurti rašymo aparatą, tačiau, mano įsitikinimu, toks keistas išradimas niekada nesulauks pasisekimo. Kai kurių rūšių neįmanoma mechanizuoti, nes joms reikia meilės, o rašymas yra viena jų.“;
„Meilė - tai tokia būklė, kurioje paprastai vyrams aptemsta protas, bet tai nepavojinga, apskritai pakanka to, kad ligoniui būtų atliepta, tuomet jis atsipeikėja ir ima žvalgytis kitos aukos.“; „Atmintis silpna ir aikštinga, kiekvienas žmogus prisimena ir pamišta tai, ką nori. Praeitis – tai storas sąsiuvinis, kuriame užsirašome gyvenimo įvykius rašalu, atitinkančiu dvasios būseną.“
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0060779004, Paperback)

A child of two worlds -- the son of an aristocratic Spanish military man turned landowner and a Shoshone warrior woman -- young Diego de la Vega cannot silently bear the brutal injustices visited upon the helpless in late-eighteenth-century California. And so a great hero is born -- skilled in athleticism and dazzling swordplay, his persona formed between the Old World and the New -- the legend known as Zorro.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:25:28 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Diego de la Vega, the son of an aristocratic Spanish landowner and a Shoshone mother, returns to California from school in Spain to reclaim the hacienda on which he was raised and to seek justice for the weak and helpless.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 8 descriptions

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