SHADOWS AND WOLVES by William Herrick


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Seville, contemporary Spain: Luis Alfara Fernandez, a 74-year-old retired Falangist general, is still loyal to the memory of the recently departed E1 Caudillo (Franco) and is trying to live out the rest of his life in peace despite the ignominy of having a son, Rodolfo, who is a wanted fugitive revolutionary. But Luis has an even greater burden: memories of his responsibility for the 1936 murder of great Spanish poet Garcia Lorca (""Alee, when would the great misdeeds begin to haunt him?""). And little does Luis know that son Rodolfo has in fact resolved to find Lorca's murderer. (""He pondered his dilemma--his decision to seek vengeance for Lorca's death and the fact that the man he stalked like a beast was his father."") Herrick (The Itinerant, Hermanos!, The Last to Die) has never been known for subtlety when dealing with the old Republican cause, and here he has contrived his most mechanically dialectic situation: father and son as opposites; father worshipping Franco while son considers him ""The Old Shit""; and both men just happening to visit the same whore, Lizeta. Finally, of course, there's a showdown, and it's appropriately preposterous: Rodolfo says ""If you speak and share your guilt with me, the pain will be less harsh. Then perhaps we both can live with less hatred."" And so, to atone for killing ""the fairy poet,"" the old general begins begging for aims in the town square. Weak politics, even weaker fiction.

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 1979
ISBN: 0811207587
Publisher: New Directions