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Book Cover for: So Far from God, Ana Castillo

So Far from God

Ana Castillo

Reader Score


77% of readers

recommend this book

Tome is a small, outwardly sleepy hamlet in central New Mexico. In Ana Castillo's hands, though, it stands wondrously revealed as a place of marvels, teeming with life and with all manner of collisions: the past with the present, the real with the supernatural, the comic with the horrific, the Native American with the Hispano with the Anglo, the women with the men. With the talkative, intimate voice and the stylistic and narrative freedom of a Southwestern Cervantes, the author relates the story of two crowded decades in the life of a Chicana family. The mother, Sofia, holds things together in the years following the disappearance of her husband Domingo (he of the Clark Gable mustache and the uncontrollable gambling habit). Then there are the daughters: Esperanza, Chicana campus radical turned career woman and television news reporter; Caridad, a nurse who dulls the pain of being jilted with nightly bouts of alcohol and anonymous sex; Fe, the prim and proper bank employee in constant quest for the good life; and la Loca, whose "death" and subsequent resurrection at age three have left her strange and saintly and attuned to higher spiritual frequencies. Ana Castillo's triumph in So Far from God is to weave the mundane and the miraculous, the modern and the archaic, and the tragic and the humorous into one rich novelistic fabric. Hers is a homegrown magical realism, leavened with sly commentary, controlled anger, and a distinct feminist point of view of the world and the cosmos. Of all the marvels in this book, and there are many, the greatest is the achievement of its creator.

Book Details

  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
  • Publish Date: Jun 17th, 2005
  • Pages: 256
  • Language: English
  • Dimensions: 8.26in - 5.50in - 0.64in - 0.46lb
  • EAN: 9780393326932
  • Categories: WomenLiteraryHispanic & Latino - General

About the Author

Castillo, Ana: - Ana Castillo is a celebrated and distinguished poet, novelist, short story writer, essayist, editor, playwright, translator, and independent scholar.

Praise for this book

History may one day proclaim So Far from God the breakthrough novel about Chicano life that Ana Castillo...was born to write...Compulsively readable, lilting, and profound...A teaching story that delights as much as it instructs, bringing us memorable characters whose lives stay with us long after the book's end.-- "San Francisco Chronicle"
The author tells an important story and she tells it with inventiveness and verve...So Far from God is a hymn to the endurance of women, both physical and spiritual.-- "Washington Post Book World"
Ana Castillo has gone and done what I always wanted to do--written a Chicana telenovela--a novel roaring down Interstate 25 at one hundred and fifteen miles an hour with an almanac of Chicanoismo--saints, martyrs, T.V. mystics, home remedies, little miracles, dichos, myths, gossip, recipes-fluttering from the fender like a flag. Wacky, wild, y bien funny. Dale gas, girl!--Sandra Cisneros, author of The House of Mango Street and Women Hollering Creek
Ana Castillo is una storyteller de primera...Her voice is distinctive-zany, knowing, rhythmic, with its very own mix of Latino-U.S. of A. to hold our attention from the first to last page of this packed, picaresque novel. So Far from God is the novel that wasn't there before but which I'd been missing. Bravo, Ana!--Julia Alvarez, author of How the García Girls Lost Their Accents
While reading, you may get an eerie feeling that you are 12 years old and back in your grandmother's kitchen smelling all those wonderful smells and hearing all her curious stories.-- "Hispanic News"
Castillo is simply dazzling, tossing off miracles, scathing social commentary, and smart-ass humor as easily and naturally as shaking water from a mane of wet hair.-- "Booklist"
Exciting and wonderful! I gave it to my mother, my sister, my daughter, my whole family. Anybody who's ever been the daughter of a mother will appreciate this book.--Ntozake Shange, author of For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf
Ana Castillo is immensely insightful in every sense of the word...A writer with enormous integrity, with common sense and lyric sense, yet one who passes back and forth between more than one psychic world...and is able to bring back what she has seen and sensed into the land of her intense and beautifully crafted writing.--Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Ph.D., author of Women Who Run with the Wolves
Exuberant and slangy...a chili mix of the conversational and poetic...haunting...profound...powerful.-- "Boston Globe"