Isabel Allende

In Isabel Allende’s new novel “Maya’s Notebook,” the 19-year-old protagonist journals about her happy childhood in Berkeley — and her later escapades involving drugs, sex and crime in Las Vegas, as she hides out from her pursuers on an island off the coast of Chile. Allende joins us to talk about the book, and about how she weaves her passion for her home country into her writing. Allende recently won the Carl Sandburg Literary Award, given to authors who have made significant contributions to the written word.

Isabel Allende, author of books including "The House of the Spirits," "Of Love and Shadows" and "The Infinite Plan"

  • thucy

    “Isabel Allende is a very bad writer and only reflects a determined period of time. After that everyone will forget her.”
    -Harold Bloom

    Isabel Allende is a great, good-hearted woman with all the right politics and great book sales. Roberto Bolano and Philip Roth were lousy people, but they wrote great books.

    More real lit, less dressed-up chick lit.

  • MarTierraySol

    Isabel Allende is one of my favorite authors. Please ask her where she finds inspiration to write about magical places that transport the reader. Her book Island Beneath the Sea was a delightful read!
    Isabel es un orgullo Hispano!

  • William – SF

    I love Isabel’s mind – adore her heart … sadly I haven’t read enough of her – that will change.

    (Roth over writes, instead read “The Twin” by Gerbrand Bakker.)

  • Munira Webb

    Listening to your interview now, love all your books. Planning to read this one for my book club. I am a huge fan and from Chile too!

  • thucy

    Roberto Bolano “called Isabel Allende a “scribbler” whose “attempts at literature range from kitsch to the pathetic.” (Allende, interviewed in 2003, dismissed Bolaño as an “extremely unpleasant” man, adding, “Death does not make you a nicer person.”) Bolaño’s obstreperousness was sometimes a pose… but his self-described “gratuitous attacks” had salutary effects. He helped liberate Latin-American writing from the debased imitations of magic realism that followed the global conquest of García Márquez’s 1967 novel “One Hundred Years of Solitude”—all those clairvoyant señoritas and intercourse-inspiring moles—and reëstablished the primacy of such cosmopolitan experimentalists as Borges and Julio Cortázar.”

  • Munira Webb

    Please tell her that as Chileans, we are proud of her. I am supossed to be at work but haven’t moved since the interview started! she is my favorite author and an inspiration to all.

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