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ISBN:0860687023
Author: Paula Fox
ISBN13: 978-0860687023
Title: A Servant's Tale
Format: txt lrf lit lrf
ePUB size: 1418 kb
FB2 size: 1694 kb
DJVU size: 1398 kb
Language: English
Category: Contemporary
Publisher: Virago Press Ltd (February 13, 1986)
Pages: 321

A Servant's Tale by Paula Fox



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A Servant's Tale is the story of a life that is simple on the surface but full of depth and richness as we come to know it, a story told with consummate grace and compassion by Paula Fo. .It’s the quiet one compared to the others that I’ve read (books are so much like siblings

Publication date 1984. Topics Americans, African American women, Household employees. Publisher New York : . Norton & Co. Collection inlibrary; printdisabled; ; china. Digitizing sponsor Internet Archive. Contributor Internet Archive. Luisa de la Cueva and her family leave their home on a small Caribbean island and try to start a new life in the barrios of New York. Books for People with Print Disabilities. Internet Archive Books. Uploaded by AngelaC-loader on August 20, 2010.

knows how to create a character. Luisa de la Cueva was born on the Caribbean island of Malagita, of a plantation owner's son and a native woman, a servant in the kitchen. She works as a servant all her life. A Servant's Tale is the story of a life that is simple on the surface but full of depth and richness as we come to know it, a story told with consummate grace and compassion by Paula Fox. Used availability for Paula Fox's A Servant's Tale.

A Servant's Tale ~~ Paula Fox. Book Lists. Paula Fox. A Servant's Tale. Her years on Malagita were sweet with the beauty of bamboo, banana, and mango trees with flocks of silver-feathered guinea hens underneath, the magic of a victrola, and the caramel flan that Mama sneaked home from the plantation kitchen. Luisa's father, fearing revolution, takes his family to New York. She marries and later raises a son alone. Full Synopsis.

In this moving tale, Paula Fox tells the story of Luisa Sanchez who was born on the Spanish-speaking Caribbean island of San Pedro in the 1930s. After spending her childhood there with the members of her family her father decides to move to New York where Luisa's fate is to become a maid like her mother. Readers won't let themselves in for 300 pages of misery because the novel is built on an astonishing sensitivity to the inner lives of its characters, a sensitivity which is conveyed clearly and honestly.

A Servant's Tale is a fascinating, character study of a difficult woman, who has trained herself to be invisible and outwardly tractable but maintains an inner dignity that will not allow her, ultimately, to run from herself. There are no car chases or earth-shattering events here; Luisa has no time for the upheaval of the 40s, the politics of the 50s, the 60s' "revolution" or the sea changes of the years after. It's a quiet book, and the small print makes it significantly denser than its 321 pages would imply, but the strength of its prose and images and the unique view from inside of this woman who can be as much of a mystery to herself as she is to her employers kept me interested, and made me resent the intrusions of my.

A Servant’s Tale by Paula Fox. Paula Fox tells the complicated and rich story of Luisa de la Cueva, the daughter of a plantation owner’s son and a native woman on the Caribbean island of Malagita. The family eventually moves to New York, where Luisa’s constant dream is to return to the island. While her life may be considered simple, considering she spends her entire life as a servant, Luisa’s story is proof of the depth that exists in every person’s history. Few have heard of Paula Fox or the brilliant piece that is A Servant’s Tale.

Otto and Sophie Bentwood live childless in a renovated Brooklyn brownstone  . Andrea Barrett "This perfect novel about pain is as clear, and as wholly believable, and as healing, as a fever dream. - Frederick Busch "Brilliant. is one of the most attractive writers to come our way in a long, long time. - The New Yorker Introduced by Jonathan Franzen, one of Granta's Twenty Best Young American Novelists.

Reviews: 5
Asher
Luisa’s mother is a maid on a sugar plantation on a Caribbean island, and I had at first assumed that she was the servant in the title. Luisa’s father, however, is the son of the plantation owner. The father uproots the family and relocates them to New York, where they get by as best they can. They are actually American citizens, thanks to Luisa’s grandfather, but Luisa ops to drop out of school at 15 to become a maid herself, much to the disappointment of her friends and this reader. I understand where she’s coming from, though. Her only real exposure to a better life is in the homes of her customers, and she can’t fathom reaching that kind of prosperity herself. Another fallacy in her thinking is her fantasy that her island home is just the way she left it, and she harbors a constant determination to go back, perhaps even permanently. In any case, the novel follows Luisa through an eclectic series of customers, who are all unique and sometimes compassionate but sometimes not. One particular betrayal by a client drives a wedge between Luisa and a loved one but spurs her to action to break the unfulfilling pattern of her life. Up until this point, I would venture that she has been living vicariously through her customers, and I think she’s overdue for realizing that she, too, can lead a rich life, with or without riches. Paula Fox’s recent death prompted me to read this book, and now I wonder how typical it is of her overall body of work.
Runehammer
Luisa Sanchez is a tropical flower, born of a Spanish island nobleman and a peasant servant, who as a young girl is uprooted and replanted in a succession of dreary apartments in New York City's Spanish Harlem. She in turn takes up the servant's life, moving from observant, opinionated child to a stoic onlooker whose pragmatic eye registers every detail of her employers' lives. She is less acute in self-knowledge; even as she stands apart from those for whom she works, she stands apart from her own emotional center, reporting in measured tones her own surprise at the riptides in her life that stir and thwart her, the people who slip past her defenses to touch her more deeply than a husband or a lover.
A Servant's Tale is a fascinating, beautifully-textured character study of a difficult woman, who has trained herself to be invisible and outwardly tractable but maintains an inner dignity that will not allow her, ultimately, to run from herself. There are no car chases or earth-shattering events here; Luisa has no time for the upheaval of the 40s, the politics of the 50s, the 60s' "revolution" or the sea changes of the years after. She keeps on keeping on, doing what she must to hold together her life and that of her son Charlie, the one person she loves deeply, simply; the one person who can cause her soul-crushing pain.
It is Fox's writing that makes all the difference, breathing life into her characters and their neuroses and sometimes psychoses. She made me care about Luisa's world, about her peculiar morality, her stubborn privacy, her dogged instinct to survive and, ultimately, that lightening-rod of practical intelligence, bound up and obscured beneath all those years of servitude, that I expect to see her through the years beyond the last page.
This is, in my opinion, an excellent book. It's a quiet book, and the small print makes it significantly denser than its 321 pages would imply, but the strength of its prose and images and the unique view from inside of this woman who can be as much of a mystery to herself as she is to her employers kept me interested, and made me resent the intrusions of my own life that forced me, all too many times, to put it down. It's the first of Fox's books I've ever read, and it won't be the last.
Susan O'Neill
Author, Don't Mean Nothing: Short Stories of Viet Nam
Gelgen
In this moving tale, Paula Fox tells the story of Luisa Sanchez who was born on the Spanish-speaking Caribbean island of San Pedro in the 1930s. After spending her childhood there with the members of her family her father decides to move to New York where Luisa's fate is to become a maid like her mother.

Readers won't let themselves in for 300 pages of misery because the novel is built on an astonishing sensitivity to the inner lives of its characters, a sensitivity which is conveyed clearly and honestly. Although Luisa struggles desperately to survive in spite of emotional, financial and racial adversity, it is a feeling of understanding she provokes more than that of pity.

It is also of course a book about the trials of immigrant life and about the tensions within the family circle which cause us to make decisions the consequences of which one only fully understands later in life. So Luisa's father is responsible for the decision to leave Malagita and he's the only one who wants to be in New York. Her mother refuses to learn English and soon dies of cancer and Luisa defies her father's wishes to become educated and aligns herself with her mother and becomes a maid.

So Luisa orchestrates her life by sticking to one persistent dream: returning to her beloved Malagita. She actually says that it is the very monotony of her servant's life that freed her to return in her thoughts to Malagita. Like so many exiles she is there but not there in the lives of wealthy New Yorkers, a group of hilarious and exotic characters marvellously drawn.

Though Luisa's fate is tragic the author gives her so much dignity that it is not possible to see her as pathetic.
Mall
I had a hard time getting into this book, but I'm glad I stuck with it. I did grow to care about Luisa and looked forward to reading what would come next for her, her son, the people she worked for, and even her father (to a much lesser extent). Interesting message in that some people do not aspire to have lofty careers, and that they're okay with it, even if the people around them want more for them.