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Bitter Grounds
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June 2018: Magical Realism > Bitter Grounds / Sandra Benítez - 4**** (DECATHALON)

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message 1: by Book Concierge (last edited Jul 02, 2018 06:03AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 6406 comments Bitter Grounds by Sandra Benítez
Bitter Grounds - Sandra Benítez

This is a sweeping historical epic covering three generations of two families: the Tabors, who are aristocratic land-owners; and the Prieto clan, the servants/peasants employed by the Tabors. Through these families the reader learns something of the history of El Salvador from about 1932 to 1975, including the role of the Church, the military, and the influence of the United States on the politics of this nation. But the main story line of the novel remained focused on these two families and their interaction over several generations.
I really enjoyed the way Benítez showed these two classes interacting. As much as they felt they were different and as much as they were kept apart (or at least the upper class tried to separate themselves from the lower class), they were inextricably linked and their lives held many parallels. Mothers and daughters disagreed; husbands betrayed their wives; children refused to listen; secrets were kept; and everyone was addicted to the radio soap opera, Los Dos (and yet never recognized how that story line also paralleled their real-life stories).

This won the American Book Award in 1998.

LINK to my review

Booknblues | 6891 comments I read this several years ago and really enjoyed it.

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