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Faith in Carlos Gomez: A Memoir of Salsa, Sex, and Salvation
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Faith in Carlos Gomez: A Memoir of Salsa, Sex, and Salvation

3.9 of 5 stars 3.90  ·  rating details  ·  42 ratings  ·  9 reviews
A writer's all-consuming passion for salsa opens the door to an unexpected world in a nonfiction tale with all the sexiness and humor of the best chick lit

Samantha Dunn is a horsewoman who's not exactly graceful-more comfortable in a barn than in a ballroom. Her introduction to salsa dancing happens by chance in a kitchen during a dinner with a blacksmith from South Americ
Paperback, 224 pages
Published August 2nd 2005 by Holt Paperbacks
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I really enjoyed this book -- although I suspect I would not have enjoyed it quite as much at a different time and place in my life.

In this memoir, Samantha Dunn tells the story of how she was introduced to salsa by a lover, and how it remained a passion long after the love affair faded. It's also the story of her love of her horse, Harley, and how her disastrous accident with him -- which nearly resulted in the loss of one of her legs -- continues to shape her life and her relationship with he
Andrea Schoellkopf
Aug 27, 2007 Andrea Schoellkopf rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: My girlfriends, especially those who can appreciate the trials of being single
Those of you from NMSU may recognize the author, Samantha Dunn, as a friend of mine from the Round Up. My contacts with her these days are about once every few years. However, this is her third book, mainly in a memoir style. Her previous writings, Failing Paris and then Not by Accident, have sort of the well-thought-out intentional prose that is seen in White Oleander, which shouldn't be too much of a surprise as Janet Fitch is in Sam's writing group in L.A. However, the Carlos Gomez book seems ...more
The steps of the salsa dance are living threads of what comes to us from the tropics, back to the Iberian peninsula, and still back to Africa. The rhythm mirrors the chants and prayers made to ancient African gods whose names are unknown - thats how long ago the prayer rhythms originated!
Salsa is a blend of 'son from Cuba and merengue from the Dominican Republic mixed with jazz. Hence, the name salsa. The steps are small because the African slaves in the caribbean could only make small powerful
I have to say I very much enjoyed this book. I'll also admit that I am highly biased as an undeniable salsa fanatic. What touched me about this book is that way that Samantha Dunn perfectly captured so many aspects of the dance, how it can become part of you and shape you as a person. She accurately describes salsa as more than just a hobby, but also as a subculture with it's own set of rules, archetypes and societal structure. An excellent read for any lover of salsa.
samantha dunn is a likeable narrator—and her determination to learn salsa, even though she's a klutz with a titanium rod in her leg, inspired me to give it a fair, sweaty shot (i may very well be more klutzy, but i cannot trump titanium).

the through line of her memoir is to move outside of our comfort zones and see ourselves transformed, one basic step at a time. she communicates this with a light touch.
This is not a bad book at all so I don't want my 2-star review to sound misleading. It is well-written and original. Still, I wasn't sure about what was the point of the whole thing. I gave it 2 stars because it is very different from what I usually read. Dunn is talented and it's an easy, relaxing read, good for vacation and plane rides.
I'm kind of embarrassed to put this book up--I got it for inspiration in my salsa career, and all it taught me was to sleep with my dance teacher and hope for a perfect man to walk into my life one day. Hmmm.
Fun writer, quirky memoir. It delivers on the Salsa and on the Sex in the subtitle but... I'll leave it at that.
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Samantha Dunn is the author of Failing Paris (Toby Press), a finalist for the PEN West Fiction Award in 2000, and the memoir, Not By Accident: Reconstructing a Careless Life (Henry Holt & Co.), a BookSense 76 pick. Her most recent memoir, Faith in Carlos Gomez: A Memoir of Salsa, Sex and Salvation, is published by Henry Holt & Co.

Samantha's work is anthologized in a number of places, incl
More about Samantha Dunn...
Failing Paris Not By Accident: Reconstructing a Careless Life Women on the Edge: Writing from Los Angeles Failing Paris Dancing at the Shame Prom: Sharing the Stories That Kept Us Small

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