Author(s): Isabel Allende
A highly personal memoir of exile and homeland, filled with the wit, melancholy and distinctive voice that have charmed readers of her fiction. My Invented Country is a memoir about her native Chile that acknowledges the role of memory and nostalgia in shaping her life, her books, and her very connection to that most intimate place of origin. Allende revisits the imaginary Chile of her childhood and young adult years as well as the real one that exists today. She evokes the magnificent landscapes of the country, a charming, idiosyncratic Chilean people with a violent history and indomitable spirit, and the politics, religion, myth and magic of her homeland that she carries with her even today. The book curls itself around two life-changing moments. The assassination of her uncle, Salvador Allende Gossens, on September 11, 1973, sent her into exile and transformed her into a literary writer; and the terrorist attack of September 11, 2001, on her newly adopted homeland. It speaks compellingly to immigrants, and to all of us, who
Isabel Allende was born in 1942, and is the niece of Salvador Allende, who went on to become famous as the elected President of Chile deposed in a CIA-backed coup. She worked as a journalist, playwright and children's writer in Chile until 1974 and then in Venezuela until 1984. Her first novel for adults, 'The House of the Spirits', was published in Spanish in 1982, beginning life as a letter to her dying grandfather. It was an international sensation, and ever since all her books have been acclaimed and adored in numberless translations worldwide.