Juliet Doubledee's Reviews > Mexico

Mexico by James A. Michener
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's review
Jun 23, 11

bookshelves: latin-america, adventure
Read from May 04 to June 23, 2011

I enjoyed this book as it describes a journalist (Norman Clay) coming to terms with his Mexican and American heritage during an epic show-down between two matadors in the bullring in his hometown in Mexico. Michener does a great job descibing the world of bull fighting, while intertwining his interpretation of Mexican history from the indian culture through the migration of American ex-patrioits arriving just after the U.S. CivilWar.
The book begins very well and keeps the interest of the reader as he describes through the styles of the two matadors -- Juan Gomez, the sturdy indian who achieves status through his bravery in the ring; and Victoriano Leal, the Spaniard who is reknown for his finesse in leading the bull and entertaining the crowds -- and how the two cultures have contributed to the history in Mexico. Later, a group of Americans who have travelled south from Tulsa to watch the two competitors over a three day period in the bull ring are introduced. The journalist conveys how he is torn between being a Mexican (on his mothers side of the family) and an American (on his fathers side), when he decribes his family history and points out that he lived in Mexico from birth until he was a teen and then moved to the U.S. with his father after the Mexican government took over the counties oil industry. Throughout the book you can feel how this journalist can relate to the various cultures attending the bull fight as historically he is part of each, but feels like an outsider to all.
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Reading Progress

05/04/2011 page 15
05/31/2011 page 301
45.0% "Never knew bull fighting was complex. Enjoying this book."
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