So far from God : a novel /

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...

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Bibliographic Details
Main Author: Castillo, Ana (Author)
Format: Book
Published: New York : W.W. Norton, ©1993.
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245 1 0 |a So far from God :  |b a novel /  |c Ana Castillo. 
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300 |a 251 pages ;  |c 22 cm 
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505 0 |a Account of the first astonishing occurrence in the lives of a woman named Sofia and her four fated daughters; and the equally astonishing return of her wayward husband -- On Caridad's holy restoration and her subsequent clairvoyance: Both phenomena questioned by the doubting Tomases of Tome -- On the subject of Dona Felicia's remedios, which in and of themselves are worthless without unwavering faith; and a brief sampling of common ailments along with cures which have earned our curandera respect and devotion throughout war and peace -- Of the further telling of our clairvoyant Caridad who after being afflicted with the pangs of love disappears and upon discovery is henceforth known as La Armitana -- Interlude: On Francisco el Penitente's first becoming a santero and thereby sealing his fate -- Renewed courtship of Loca's mom and dad and how in '49 Sofia got swept off her feet by Domingo's Clark Gable mustache, despite her familia's opinion of the charlatan actor -- Caridad reluctantly returns home to assume a life as what folks in "Fanta Se" call a channeler -- What appears to be a deviation of our story but wherein, with some patience, the reader will discover that there is always more than the eye can see to any account -- Sofia, who would never again let her husband have the last word, announces to the amazement of her familia and vecinos her decision to run for la mayor of Tome -- Wherein Sofia discovers La Loca's playmate by the acequia has an uncanny resemblance to the legendary Llorona; the ectoplasmic return of Sofi's eldest daughter; Fe falls in love again; and some culinary advice from La Loca -- Marriage of Sofia's faithful daughter to her cousin, Casimiro, descendant of sheepherders and promising accountant, who, by all accounts, was her true fated love; and of her death, which lingers among us all heavier than air -- Of the hideous crime of Francisco el Penitente, and his pathetic calls heard throughout the countryside as his body dangled from a pinon like a crow-picked pear; and the end of Caridad and her beloved emerald, which we nevertheless will refrain from calling tragic -- Final farewell of Don Domingo, sin a big mitote; and an encounter with un doctor invisible, or better known in these parts as a psychic surgeon, who, in any case, has no cure for death -- Dona Felicia calls in the troops who herein reveal a handful of their own tried and proven remedios; and some mixed medical advice is offered to the beloved Doctor Tolentino -- La loca Santa returns to the world via Albuquerque before her transcendental departure; and a few random political remarks from the highly opinionated narrator -- Sofia founds and becomes la first presidenta of the later-to-become world-renowned organization M.O.M.A.S.; and a rumor regarding the inevitability of double standards is (we hope) dispensed with. 
520 |a 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. 
586 |a Mountains & Plains Book Award, 1994. 
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