Fathoming the mysteries of the Indian heart -- be it the proud, silent first heart or the more expressive second one -- is a...

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THE SECOND HEART

Fathoming the mysteries of the Indian heart -- be it the proud, silent first heart or the more expressive second one -- is a formidable task made all the more difficult by Marina's vulnerable position as a poorly educated village girl whose cosmopolitan ambitions take her no further than a maid's job in Cuernavaca. Marina's ambivalent feelings about the city are imagined with some insight, but her two boyfriends (one Indian, one criollo), the grandmother Dona Rosamunda who still lives in her memories of the revolution, and the blond American girl whose naive idealism contrasts with Marina's own fatalism are mere notations. Few readers will recognize the real life counterpart of the ""French priest"" whose institute for foreign students arouses Marina's hopes and suspicions and most will take away little more than a fleeting impression of the bitterness of village squalor and the petty humiliations of life as a domestic servant. One can see a little way into Marina's heart, but her city friends have a lesser sort of transparency so that her final choice of Ricardo over Geraldo is dictated by the obvious prerequisites of teenage romance rather than the symbolism of cultural assimilation to which it is rhetorically and rather limply attributed.

Pub Date: Sept. 7, 1973

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Atheneum

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1973