In the Midst of Winter. Finished audio 12-12-18, rating 3.75/5, fiction, pub. 2017
Unabridged audio read by Dennis Boutsikaris, Jasmine Cephas Jones, Alma Cuervo.
In the Midst of Winter begins with a minor traffic accident—which becomes the catalyst for an unexpected and moving love story between two people who thought they were deep into the winter of their lives. Richard Bowmaster—a 60-year-old human rights scholar—hits the car of Evelyn Ortega—a young, undocumented immigrant from Guatemala—in the middle of a snowstorm in Brooklyn. What at first seems just a small inconvenience takes an unforeseen and far more serious turn when Evelyn turns up at the professor’s house seeking help. At a loss, the professor asks his tenant Lucia Maraz—a 62-year-old lecturer from Chile—for her advice. These three very different people are brought together in a mesmerizing story that moves from present-day Brooklyn to Guatemala in the recent past to 1970s Chile and Brazil, sparking the beginning of a long overdue love story between Richard and Lucia. from Goodreads
I love Allende’s writing. It’s always so rich and beautiful and this was no exception. There were a few things said at the beginning that really connected me to Lucia and that was a good thing, because for me, the story was a little disappointing. The car accident that got them all together in a pot brownie haze and the decisions made after were crazy. But, the story that each of them told about Guatamala, Chile, and Brazil were eye opening, especially Evelyn’s considering the focus on the immigrant caravans these days. Timely and well written, but the common narrative forcing them all together, while compelling in spots, missed the mark for me.