The Tree of Life: Stories of Civil War
by Mario Bencastro
English Translation by Susan Giersbach Rascón
Published: 30 Jun 1997
Bind: Trade Paperback
Out of stock
A grand, mystical tree festooned with brilliant red flowers becomes the heart of a village. When the tentacles of civil unrest tear the hamlet apart, the tree swallows the dead, and the fallen friends and enemies are born again to live in peace within the majestic and benevolent tree.
The passion and politics of the civil war in El Salvador and the blight of political strife and social injustice color this richly textured short story collection, With poetic vision, Mario Bencastro chronicles a chapter of hemispheric history that gripped El Salvador and polarized not only the United States but also every other country in South America. The turmoil, intrigue and suffering have been captured and universalized in these beautifully wrought tales told from the perspective of the common man caught up in a confusing maelstrom.
“[Bencastro makes] powerfully real for us the human dimensions of war’s phlegmatic impersonality.”—Kirkus Reviews
MARIO BENCASTRO is the author of award-winning novels that explore the impact of civil war in the lives of Central American immigrants in the United States. His first novel, A Shot in the Cathedral (Arte Público Press, 1996), was a finalist for the international Novedades y Diana award, and his collection of short stories, The Tree of Life: Stories of Civil War (Arte Público Press, 1997) focuses on the civil war that took place in El Salvador in the eighties. Odyssey to the North (Arte Público Press, 1998) examines Central American immigration into the United States. Bencastro’s novels have been published in Canada, El Salvador, United States, Haiti, India and Mexico. Bencastro lives in Florida.
Learn more at mariobencastro.org.