Three must-read Latin-American authors if you seek intense stories

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By Alexa Martínez

Have you ever given a chance to Latin-American writers? Laura Esquivel, Mario Vargas Llosa y Mario Mendoza, are Latin-American authors who have written books that were best sellers and winners of awards such as the Nobel Prize in Literature and the Library Award.

Romantic, historical, and horror works that will catch you from cover to cover and that you cannot miss, I am sure that they will keep you on the edge of your seat.

1. Like Water for Chocolate – Laura Esquivel

Tita and Pedro love each other, but she is condemned to remain single so she can take care of her mother.

A Mexican best-seller full of love and delicious Mexican food recipes. While you are reading it, you will not know if you are hungry or eager to love. A novel developed at the time of the Mexican revolution, it tells the love story of Tita and Pedro, which is impossible because according to tradition, she must take care of her mother until she dies just because she is the youngest daughter. An unfair tradition without a doubt that takes away from Tita the possibilities of being loved and happy just as her sisters can.

This novel has emotions that will make your heart race and your stomach ask for all of the meals that Tita cooks in each chapter. Like Water for Chocolate has a film adaptation but you cannot miss this amazing book.

2. The Neighborhood – Mario Vargas Llosa

He had thought that, after all, a journalist could sometimes be useful but also dangerous.

The Neighborhood is the book that gave the Nobel Prize in Literature to Vargas Llosa. This is an essential reading of this Peruvian author. The story unfolds with people living lives that will keep you glued to the book for hours. Starting with two women who have been friends for a long time and one night spontaneously find themselves involved in an erotic situation, they both are married, and their husbands belong to the upper class. On the other hand, the novel revolves around tabloid journalism. The scenario? The Fujimori dictatorship, when Peru was a dangerous country and you had to be with caution while walking in the streets of Lima.

This work of Vargas Llosa will show you that journalism could be a mixed blessing, on one hand being something dirty, but on the other, being a tool to achieve society’s freedom.

3. Satan – Mario Mendoza

I am legion.

In this title winner of the Library Award 2002, Mario Mendoza managed to create three stories around a tragic massacre that marked the history of Bogota, Colombia and that was perpetrated by a Vietnam war veteran. 

Campo Elias Delgado perpetrated the Pozzetto Massacre in Bogota on December 4th, 1986, he was also an English teacher, and was obsessed with the good and the bad and the duality that both represent. With similarities to Jekyll and Hyde, in this novel, you will join Elias in his decline and likewise, other three peoples with very different lives, but with something in common, the reminder about the presence of evil in everyday life, such as an exorcism and blasphemies.

These books are easy and quick reads and without a doubt incredible that you cannot miss, so if you don’t know what to read on your weekend or free times, give them a try, you will not regret it. Besides, you have three options; love and Mexican cuisine, journalism and eroticism, exorcisms and tragedies, so pick one.