Don Morales tells stories. He tells lots of stories. About Chimbote, the Peruvian town where he lives. About fishing, the lifeblood of the town. And about change, which is not always the same as
progress. Stories about the first people to inhabit the region and stories about the people who live there now. Stories about the early people's love of the land and more recent people's destruction
of it. Stories about how people used to get along with one another and stories about how things got to be so bad that the government began to murder its own citizens.
Peruvian author Muñoz's elegiac and piercing novel brings to life the once tiny town of Chimbote—and the nearby village of Tancay.
Muñoz offers an elegaic lament for a disappearing way of life along Peru's Pacific coast. Memorable personalities crop up throughout the narrative, including heroic Paton and muderous Canchero, but the disaster that invariably intervenes turns Muñoz's nostalgic journey into a meditation on natural disaster and political upheaval.
Don Morales is a wise
man. But he is also a sad man, mourning the loss of the past, of better times, of brotherhood. With his short, evocative stories—told with simplicity and beauty—he pulls his readers closer to him,
as if he were speaking directly to us. For the good fishermen of Tancay, life was better yesterday than it is today. It was better to live in harmony with the sea. When they lived in harmony with the
natural world, there was harmony in the human world, too. With a nostalgic feel, yet reflecting Peru's current political instability, this is a delightful book with an important message. When the
natural order is disrupted, it is not only fish that die. When nature dies, so might we all.