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Seven Stories Press

Works of Radical Imagination


Conceived the night of Che Guevara’s burial in 1967, Gabriel McKenzie is inextricably bound up in the history and politics of his native Chile. Twenty-four years on, and still a virgin, Gabriel returns from Manhattan exile to confront his legacy: a Don Juan father and a country preparing for the five-hundredth anniversary of America’s "discovery." Into Gabriel’s quest for manhood and identity enter one iceberg, a faithful if eccentric nanny, and a whole host of fantastical characters.


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“A work of tremendous ambition … A fantastic, wide-ranging family saga. Dorfman creates a disturbing portrait of Chile in the early 1990s.”

“Wonderfully peopled with dppelgangers, metafictional turns and doses of myth and magic. It affirms Ariel Dorfman's place, alongside Vargo Llosa and Gabriel Garcia Marquez, as one of the finest voices in contemporary Latin American storytelling.”

“The writing is vital, urgent, energetic, the twists and turns of the plot ingeniously unpredictable: a magicians box of tricks.”

“A fascinating read … worth every labyrinthine page!”

“This is an astonishing book … brilliantly constructed … a wonderful, rumbustious and entertaining novel.”


Ariel Dorfman is considered to be one of “the greatest Latin American novelists” (Newsweek) and one of the United States’ most important cultural and political voices. A Chilean-American author born in Argentina, his numerous award-winning works of fiction, nonfiction and poetry have been published in more than fifty  languages. His play, Death and the Maiden, which has been performed in over one hundred countries, was made into a film by Roman Polanski. Among his works are the novels WidowsThe Nanny and the Iceberg, Mascara and Konfidenz, and the memoirs Heading South, Looking Northand Feeding on Dreams. He recently published a collection of essays, Homeland Security Ate My Speech: Messages from the End of the World. He contributes to major papers worldwide, including frequent comments in The New York TimesThe Nation and the New York Review of Books. His stories have appeared in The New Yorker, the AtlanticHarper’sPlayboyIndex on Censorship and many other magazines and journals. A prominent human rights activist, he lives with his wife Angélica in Chile and Durham, North Carolina, where he is the Walter Hines Page Emeritus Professor of Literature at Duke University.

Other books by Ariel Dorfman