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The Dark Bride

3.69  ·  Rating details ·  764 Ratings  ·  69 Reviews
Once a month, the refinery workers of the Tropical Oil Company descend upon Tora, a city in the Colombian forest. They journey down from the mountains searching for earthly bliss and hoping to encounter Sayonara, the legendary Indian prostitute who rules their squalid paradise like a queen. Beautiful, exotic, and mysterious, Sayonara, the undisputed barrio angel, captivate ...more
Paperback, 368 pages
Published September 2nd 2003 by Harper Perennial (first published 1999)
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(showing 1-30)
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Scarlet Cameo
Dec 07, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: rc-15
Sayonara es un personaje de esos que dejan huella no sólo en la historia, sino en el lector. Cada vez que piense en una luz morada pensaré en ella y en como su historia fue entretejiéndose con ese magnético resplandor mientras fue la más bella y cotizada prostituta de La Catunga.

Escrito como una investigación realizada por una reportera,el magnetismo de Sayonara queda demostrado desde la primera vez que escuchamos de ella, cuando era sólo La Niña, hasta cuando su figura trasciende historia y fro
...more
Joe
Feb 02, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Those who love south america and those who like to find cool devices in literature
Recommended to Joe by: John Gitliz
I read this book in English, the spanish is infinitly(sp) more beautiful. Laura Restrepo is clever, clearly a learned writer. The characters are attractive and salacious and dirty. The social reversal of the strength/power of women within a red-light district vs. them in a greater community, the force and prudence of a religious society, the super-natural hue of Sayonara and the rustic genius of Todos Los Santos all contribute to Restrepo's arsenal of colombian historical-fiction. There are endl ...more
Susana
Aug 20, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: en-casa
Laura Restrepo es una mis autoras favoritas, desde que leí "Leopardo al Sol" y luego "Delirio", Premio Alfaguara 2004.
No es el mejor libro y nunca lo recomendaría para juzgar su obra.
Bloodorange
If you want to write a bestseller about the disastrous effects the presence of exploitative American imperialists had on Colombia, write about a young prostitute (a tested method) living in the Colombian jungle. A prostitute falls in love with a labourer (make sure you get a blurb from Isabel Allende mentioning passion, desire, and hope).

Make the prostitute a mysterious and - up to a point - nameless half-Indian, and describe how her brother and mother died tragically because of their Indian de
...more
Lori
Jan 22, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Restrepo is a gifted writer, an artisan with her words, her characters, her plot and it these are the talents that make this work of fiction a good piece of literature.

This novel is magical. The main characters are prostitutes, women typically considered vulgar and base, but she makes them queens. Restrepo creates a lushness that illuminates the reality of love and life and the sisterhood of women who teach, guide, embrace, love, and support each other through the triumphs and losses they exper
...more
Brayan Zarate
Mar 18, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
RESEÑA COMPLETA ---> https://trappedamongletters.blogspot....
WOW! En verdad, un libro magnífico. No esperaba encontrarme semejante historia.
Primero que todo, la autora. Me llevé una gran sorpresa al saber que era colombiana y más aún, bogotana, de mi tierrita. Y no solo el hecho de que sea autora nacional sino que en verdad tiene un talento increíble. Su narración tan única, la profundidad de sus historia y los sentimientos que puede transmitir a través de simples oraciones.
La trama, fue ot
...more
Laura
Jul 28, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Esta es otra de las recomendaciones de mis compañeros en el curso sobre Latinoamérica de Coursera. La autora es bien conocida pero yo me estreno con esta novela.
La obra se plantea como una fusión de géneros: el reportaje periodístico y la historia literaria. Según declara la propia Laura Restrepo en uno de los apéndices de esta edición, esta es una de sus formas preferidas de trabajar, por la libertad que le otorga. Se inserta así en una poblada tradición en la que residen Truman Capote, Mailer
...more
Amandasaved
Aug 16, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I am an avid reader so usually I give books away to the Library or good will the moment I am done with them. This one is great. It haunts you in a way that is good. It makes you think back, makes you apreciate the world you grew up in. While women in the 50s and 60s in the USA were typing up memos or being good little housewives, a world away in rural South America women were engaging in the oldest job in the world. And were rejected by the authorities for it. Love was a word the young girl didn ...more
Eduardo
May 18, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Como mucha de la literatura de L. Restrepo, esta novela está basada en eventos, historias y personajes reales, que ella filtra de manera espectacular. Aunque uno de los ejes centrales de la trama, la pasión amorosa entre una ramera y un obrero del petróleo, se anticipa por el lector, en su desarrollo, desenlace y justificación, la maestría con que la narradora nos cuenta las vidas y milagros de todo un barrio de prostitutas en un lugar perdido de Colombia, con creces suple este "spoiler" que seg ...more
Sara
Jan 12, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Buenisima historia. Sorprende, divierte y enamora igual que Idilio. Las situaciones a las que se enfrentan los personajes van y vuelven entre la comicidad, el drama y hasta la violencia, sin perder el sentido de lo contado, o lo buscado. Laura Restrepo en sus historias siempre buscando algo o alguien. Son de resaltar los personajes, sobre todo las personalidades de las compañeras de profesion de "La novia oscura".
Kary
Dec 19, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Se me hizo bastante largo y a veces recaía en detallar cosas o situaciones que a la larga no tenían ninguna trascendencia. Aparte de eso, era de un lenguaje exquisito, aunque sencillo y de fácil lectura, y en general me gustó mucho. Mi única queja es que el final no se sentía como un final, en lo absoluto, no vi concluida la historia y distó mucho del final que me esperé.
Joe Cummings
I've been wanting to read this novel for a while. There are a lot of interesting Latin American women writers-like Isabel Allende, Laura Esquivel, and Gioconda Belli-who have written in the "magic realism" style started by Gabriel Márguez García back in the Sixties. Laura Restrepo belongs to this group.

In some ways, Restrepo has much more in common with the maestro Gabo than the others. Both are from Columbia, and both have a background in journalism. So I thought that she might write in style t
...more
Editorial Alfaguara
�Una historia de amor tr�gica y brillante.� Library Journal �Restrepo es una estupenda escritora y �ste es su mejor libro hasta ahora. La historia Sayonara, una joven bella prostituta que atiende a los empleados de los pozos petroleros en la selva, es tan perturbadora como el elenco de personajes exc�ntricos que la persiguen. El universo cerrado de la zona de tolerancia del pueblo miserable en el que Sayonara trabaja bien podr�a ser considerado como una met�fora de Colombia y de la mayor parte d ...more
Marty
Laura Restropo was inspired by the photograph of an unknown woman, reproduced on the book's cover, to write this imagined account of her life. The skinny girl, who becomes the infamously beautiful Sayanora, shows up on the doorstep of the motherly madam Todos los Santos, determined to make her living serving the men from the local oil fields. What is known of her life before and after her time at the bordello La Catunga is revealed piece by piece through 'interviews' with those who knew her best ...more
Claudia
Jan 26, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Read it in Spanish. Great book.
Patyta
Mar 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kaitlin
I have heard great things about Laura Restrepo, so going into this book I admit that I had high hopes. I wish that i would have read this in Spanish because I feel that is the best way to soak in her realism.

Restrepo told an intriguing love story between a "puta" (prostitute) and a "petrolero" (oil worker) while exposing the struggles of the people and the way Americans exploited Colombia at the time. You learn how being a prostitute was really the only choice for a poor Colombian girl and how
...more
Marianna G
Feb 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
Este libro ha llegado ha mi vida sin aviso alguno, gracias a la recomendación de una amiga. Me ha gustado, la historia y forma de escritura de Laura Gallego te obliga prácticamente a encariñarte con los personajes, que por cierto están bien construidos, uno más que otros.
Este libro trata sobre una prostituta llamada Sayonara, la más solicitada y amada de un pueblo llamado La Catunga. No diré más para que te adentres a este libro sin ninguna clase de expectativa y puedas disfrutar de esta agradab
...more
Gustavo
Aug 07, 2014 rated it did not like it
As I have enjoyed "Delirio" a lot, I've got this book - the one Restrepo wrote before Delirio. But I was disappointed. The book deals with some whores in a city in Colombia, mainly about two of them, Todos los Santos and Sayonara, and it's written as if Restrepo was listening to an old Todos los Santos (and some other old people) remembering their "adventures".
I would like to compare with two other writers that told stories about whores. As a great accomplishment, I would cite the fantastic "Mid
...more
Kayla
Oct 03, 2014 rated it liked it
The Dark Bride is an intense book that will definitely keep you interested, though it isn't the best novel that I've ever read. I needed to read it for class and found myself needing to push through it because I wasn't very connected with the characters. I thought that the setting was interesting and was depressed about the lack of possibilities for the men and especially the women living in this area. I haven't read much about Colombia so in itself I thought that it was a good experience to rea ...more
Daniel Mariani
May 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Amé esta descripción de La Novia Oscura.

"A falta de aceite santo, iba ungida con la arrogancia de su perfume barato, a cambio de manto y corona, lucía el desparpajo de su piel morena y desde el pedestal de sus ya maltrechos zapatos de tacón altísimos trataba al universo entero como si fuera vasallo rendido a sus pies. Si las estrellas fugaces se descolgaban del cielo, era para traerle noticias de otras errancias, ¿y para quién, sino para ella, anunciaba el vigilante nocturno la ronda de cada hor
...more
Diana Dincau
Dec 28, 2014 rated it it was ok
Cuando empecé el libro entendía poco y nada, era más bien una combinación de nombres y descripciones de personas, una tras otra y así sucesivamente. No le veo lo malo al asunto, salvo que hasta más tarde no hallaba el ''desarrollo'' de la trama. Además, cuenta con una dosis de ''humor'' -o por lo menos eso me pareció- que al contrario de lo que imaginé por la portada y la sinopsis, es particular. Y... no menos importante: no me agradó para nada. Es decir, es una clase de recurrencias del tipo c ...more
Laura Angulo
Jan 31, 2017 rated it liked it
Una periodista, indaga la vida de Sayonara la siempre amada, una enigmática prostituta que vive en Tora en la selva colombiana, va armando el rompecabezas de su vida entrevistando a los protagonistas de su vida, Todos Santos, la matrona , Sacramento su eterno enamorado, sus compañeras de profesión, sus antiguos enamorados; así va descubriendo un entramado que la lleva a ser testigo del verdadero amor de la protagonista , un petrolero al que le jura amor eterno los viernes últimos de cada mes, y ...more
Ricardo Moreno mauro
Aug 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Sayonara "Adios", en japones, en una prostituta que vive en la "Catunga", un pueblo en la selva colombiana. Las prostitutas de allí viven en función de los obreros de la Compañia petrolera que bajan al pueblo cada cierto tiempo. Saypnara en mezcla de balco con india guahira, y quizás esta bibalencia o ambigüedad le marcará el resto de su vida. Ella llegó al pueblo para ser prostituta, los hombres se mueren por ella, pero ella no los quieres. Sin embargo, al único que ella quizo de verdad será su ...more
Eduardo Hernandez
Mar 15, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Cautivante, ese adjetivo describe este libro. He leido otros libros de Laura Restrepo, pero ninguno como este. La historia contada de una manera magnifica, me tuvo atrapada en las diferentes historias contadas, viviendolas. Obviamente que la influencia de Garcia Marquez se reconoce, pero no empaña la novela que cuenta con luz propia.
Relato sobre la historia de Colombia que no podras encontrar en ningun texto de historia, pero que es tan real, tan humano, pero a la vez tan magico como es todo el
...more
Andrea
Sep 15, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Waste. Of. Time. Laura Restrepo is one of my favorite authors, but I seriously struggled to make it through this novel. The style and originality that captivated me in Leopardo al sol and Delirio are completely absent in La novia oscura. To be brutally honest, it reads like a cheap knock-off of Garcia Marquez and/or Vargas Llosa. Redeeming feature: There is a brilliant scene, in Chapter 23, when one of the female characters looks through the fence of the wealthy neighborhood that houses the Amer ...more
Yalinda Carames
Aug 01, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Como termina la historia y que puedo decir al respecto? No lo sé porque es la primera vez que dejo un libro incompleto, llegue a la pagina 189 y me pregunto cómo es que pude aguantar tanto?



La historia de la prostituta no es mala por el contrario creo que es muy interesante, me encantan las palabras y los toques de poesía que nos transmite la autora, pero su forma de tejer la trama es demasiado lenta y sin ninguna secuencia a lo largo de los hechos. La encontré muy aburrida y muy simple. No me g
...more
Cindi
Apr 04, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Those currious about the sex trade of ages past.
Recommended to Cindi by: I got this book for free when I showed up for Jury Duty. Theu l
Sayonara, the elusive "Japanese Princess" is the main subject of this interview flashback. The story is told by a woman who seeks the history of a girl who arrived as a whirlwind in the prostitution district of a south-American oil town, run by US executives, and disappeared forever. The characters have such rich flavor, from Santos, the orphan of a prostitute turned oil-worker, to the Mexican-Indian-girl-who-would-become Sayonara, herself.
This book was amazing reading material, highly reminisce
...more
Elise
Mar 22, 2012 rated it really liked it
"The Dark Bride" is an alluring, beautifully written, magic realist escape of a book about legendary prostitute, Sayonara, who captivates the petroleros (oil workers) in the jungle of Colombia in a remote time in the past. I loved it, but I found the journalistic narrative style somewhat distracting. Yes, almost all of my favorite Magic Realist authors from Latin America cut their teeth on journalism and were reporters first, and that is a strength in every case, but I was craving a more seamles ...more
Kyote4me
Mar 02, 2011 rated it really liked it
The writing style is very lyrical and visual, refreshingly different from most American (USA) writers. Restrepo paints a very realistic and unflattering picture of the U.S. oil company and its interactions with the Colombian community. Novel about the Colombian oil field workers and the prostitutes in Colombia written by a professor of literature at the National University of Colombia in Bogota, Colombia.
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Laura Restrepo is a Colombian writer. Her first fiction novel, Isle of Passion, is based on historical facts from Clipperton Island.

She is an award winning author. In 1997, she won the "Premio Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz" prize at the Guadalajara Book Fair for her novel The Angel of Galilea. In 2002 she won the "Premio Arzobispo San Clemente" Award for her novel Leopard in the Sun. In 2004 she won t
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“Escribir esta historia se me ha convertido en una carrera perdida de antemano contra el tiempo y la desmemoria, que son dos hermanos gemelos de dedos largos que todo lo tocan.” 2 likes
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