In the tradition of Isabel Allende’s career-launching debut,The House of the Spirits, a multigenerational, Latin American saga of love and revolution in which a young man abandons his family for the cause—and receives a late-life chance at redemption: “a tour de force” from “the new master” (Luis Alberto Urrea,New York Timesbestselling author ofGood Night, Irene).
In 1964, Stanislavo, a zealous young man devoted to his ideals, turns his back on his privilege to join the leftist movement in the jungles of Venezuela. There, as he trains, he meets Emiliana, a nurse and fellow revolutionary. Though their intense connection seems to be love at first sight, their romance is upended by a decision with consequences that will echo down through the generations. Forty years later, the country’s political landscape has drastically changed, as have the trajectories that Stanislavo and Emiliana followed in the intervening decades. When a young boy is accidentally shot on the eve of the attempted coup against President Chávez, Stanislavo’s chance encounter with the boy’s mother forces a reckoning with past missteps and the ways his actions have reverberated into the present. With its epic scope, gripping narrative, and unflinching intimacy, Freedom Is a Feast announces a major new talent. Alejandro Puyana has delivered an extraordinarily wise and moving debut about sticking to one’s beliefs at the expense of pain and chaos, about the way others can suffer for our misdeeds even when we have the best of intentions, and about the possibility for redemption when love persists across time.