Skip to main content

Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya

One of the classics in Chicano literature, Bless me, Ultima is a poignant novel about a boy who, on the threshold of manhood, seeks himself through his own roots, pushing the confines of his upbringing, opening his mind to the magic and changes in the world and the exploration of other beliefs. Through it all, there is Ultima, who is his guide to wisdom.

There's something sultry in the pull of magic realism. Not only that, the colorful textures of Chicano and Latin America literature, such as this, bring about a cauldron of tastes and tempestuousness in the air.

The book reminisces of the old vaqueros of what is now New Mexico, the little towns and family ranches, the infiltrating pagan faith that still exists and always, the feel of the beating sun and the mystery of spirits in nature.

Such are mostly the symbolism pervading Chicano novels that the touch of supernatural seemed quite only natural (albeit largely it is cultural). These elements never fail to draw me in and with bated breath has me savoring its familiarity to my own culture.

Rudolfo Anaya, considered as the founder of modern Chicano literature, writes piercingly, nudging emotions with its atmospheric feel and wistful tones. The hero spends half the time musing that I cannot help but present the same questions he has within myself. As old as I am, I find it enlightening and nostalgic; in that there's still a lot to be gleaned from a coming-of-age novel.


Antonio Marez is six years old when Ultima enters his life. She is a curandera, one of who heals with herbs and magic. 'We cannot let her live her last days in loneliness,' says Antonio's mother. 'It is not the way of our people,' agrees his father. And so Ultima comes to live with Antonio's family in New Mexico. Soon Tony will journey to the threshold of manhood. Always, Ultima watches over him. She graces him with the courage to face childhood bigotry, diabolical possession, the moral collapse of his brother, and too many violent deaths.

Under her wise guidance, Tony will probe the family ties that bind him, and he will find in himself the magical secrets of the pagan past--a mythic legacy equally as palpable as the Catholicism of Latin America in which he has been schooled. At each turn in his life there is Ultima who will nurture the birth of his soul.

Title: Bless Me, Ultima
Author: Rudolfo Anaya
Genre: Classics, Magic Realism, Coming of Age
Published: 1999 (first published 1972)
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Rating: ♨♨♨♨ ( 4 cups - A book of contrasts; nurturing the soul as well as displaying the realities of the world.)


Popular posts from this blog

Review Post: Fool Me Once by Catherine Bybee

Rating/Review: ☕☕☕☕ 1/2 (4.5 cups, this romantic suspense will give new meaning to The First Wives Club)
You never know what you really would be getting when reading a Catherine Bybee book.  On the outside, each book can definitely hold its own as a great contemporary romance novel.  Read a little bit further, you get well-defined, multilayered characters and a romantic suspense in the making. Pretty soon you will be amazed on the intricate storyline balanced well with the main characters developing romance.  Fool Me Once is definitely a Catherine Bybee book.  The first in her new series, First Wives,  Fool Me Once is also a spinoff from her popular Weekday Bride series.  And yet again, Ms. Bybee delivers in her great characters, well thought out plot and melding her two series together without one overpowering the other.
The story starts out as the head of Alliance and their legal go to person, Lori try to help one of their client who unexpectedly lost her husband.  To get her away …

Spotlight Tour: A Sky Full of Stars by Samantha Chase

The stars are about to align in the newest Shaughnessy brothers romance!
WHEN WORLDS COLLIDE Brilliant astrophysicist Dr. Owen Shaughnessy feels more connected to the cosmos than to people. He’s great with calculations, but when he leads a team of scientists to study a famous meteor shower, he doesn’t factor in his free-spirited artist assistant Brooke Matthews.
LOVE CAN DAZZLE YOU Polar opposites in personality, the friction between them threatens to derail the project. But the beauty and mystery of the night sky draw Owen and Brooke together—and she’s going to surprise him in ways the stars never could.

Amazon: B&N: iBooks:


“That was…interesting.” “I never thought I’d see those two mediums used together.” “I may have to stab my own eyes out to make sure I never see it again,” Brooke said and then shuddered. They had just left the art gallery, and she waited until they were at the corner before looking at Owen. “I…

Review & Excerpt Tour: My Fair Duchess:Dukes Behaving Badly by Megan Frampton

An unexpected duchess proves that behaving  badly isn't exclusive to the Dukedom.

MY FAIR DUCHESS Dukes Behaving Badly #5 Megan Frampton Releasing Feb 28, 2017 Avon Books

In Megan Frampton's most recent installment of The Dukes Behaving Badly series, an unexpected duchess proves that behaving badly isn't exclusive to the Dukedom.
The Unexpected Duchess
Archibald Salisbury, son of a viscount, war hero, and proficient in the proper ways of aristocratic society, has received orders for his most challenging mission: Genevieve, Duchess of Blakesley. How she inherited a duchy isn’t his problem. Turning her into a perfect duchess is. But how can he keep his mind on business when her beauty entices him toward pleasure?
It was impossible, unprecedented…and undeniably true. Genevieve is now a “duke”, or, rather, a duchess. So what is she to do when the ton eyes her every move, hoping she’ll make a mistake? Genevieve knows she has brains and has sometimes been told she has beauty, but, out of …