Recommended by Paul, City Lights Books

Amulet is a novel of extraordinary intensity by literary phenomenon Roberto Bolaño: "the real thing and the rarest"—Susan Sontag

Amulet embodies in one woman's breathtaking voice the melancholy and violent recent history of Latin America. It begins: "This is going to be a horror story."

The speaker is Auxilio Lacouture, a Uruguayan woman in Mexico City in the 1960s, who becomes the "Mother of Mexican Poetry." Tall, thin, and blonde, she is famous as the sole person who resists the army's invasion of the university campus: she hides in a ladies' room for twelve days. As she waits out the occupiers, with nothing to eat, Auxilio recalls her adventures in exile, and talks about two elderly exiled lions of Spanish poetry, three remarkable women, and her favorite young poet, Arturo Belano (Bolaño's fictional stand-in throughout his books). Her stories refract light and Auxilio is soon in strange landscapes: in "the dark night of the soul of Mexico City," in ice-bound mountainsides, in a bathroom where moonlight shines, moving slowly from tile to tile, and in a terrifying chasm. Amulet keenly demonstrates, as The Los Angeles Times noted, that "Bolaño is by far the most exciting writer to have come from south of the Rio Grande in a long time."

Title Amulet
Author Roberto Bolaño
Publisher New Directions
Title First Published 30 May 2008
Format Paperback
Nb of pages 192 p.
ISBN-10 0811217469
ISBN-13 9780811217460
Publication Date 30 May 2008
Main content page count 192
Weight 16 oz.

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