Tuesday, September 02, 2008


The Angel of Galilea, Laura Restrepo, Random House Inc, 1997, 193 pp

I have found a new author to love. She is Colombian, she is literary and political in life, but she has an element of the magical/spiritual in her writing.

In this novel, Mona is a frustrated journalist in Bogota, Columbia, making her living writing junk for a tabloid. When she is sent to cover sightings of an angel in the slums, she falls headlong into a whole other world, as well as headlong in love with the angel. The angel means many different things to many different people, as angels often do. Is he truly from God, a sexual deviant, a psychotic or the work of the devil?

In the process of trying to love and save this being, Mona is brought face to face with the evils and glories of life in her city and revives a certain deadness in her heart. I liked the several juxtapositions that Restrepo sets up as well as her humorous and pointed remarks about modern life in Columbia.

This is possibly her first novel (it is always hard to tell with foreign fiction) and she has at least five more which I look forward to reading.

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