In a remote corner of a Latin American rainforest, a badly wounded soldier encounters an English Catholic priest who takes him to the Indian village where Father Thomas has his church.
The Indians, whose traditional way of life is under threat from squatters who settle in the forest they once had all to themselves, are wary of the new arrival.
The army has been sent to evict the squatters, but they are defended by a group of guerrillas.
Venustiano, the proud young Indian head of the village, is determined to protect his people, but sometimes feels powerless against the changes taking place around him.
He despairs of his people's craving for city life, and he mistrusts the squatters, the guerrillas, the army, Father Thomas and even Milagros, the archaeologist searching the area for the ruins of a lost ancient city without success. But his immediate problem is the bloodthirsty jaguar prowling around the village: he is the only Indian with a gun, and he means to use it.
In his first novel for five years, Panos Karnezis tells a story of almost elemental directness.
The dilemmas faced by his characters are stark in their simplicity, and yet seemingly incapable of resolution. This short novel has profound things to say about faith, justice, progress, and violence.
- Format: Hardback
- Pages: 208 pages
- Publisher: Vintage Publishing
- Publication Date: 16/04/2015
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9780224101738