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Little, Brown and Company

Freedom Is a Feast by Alejandro Puyana (Hardcover) (PREORDER)

Freedom Is a Feast by Alejandro Puyana (Hardcover) (PREORDER)

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Fiction - Literary - Political - World Literature - South America - Venezuela 


In the tradition of Isabel Allende’s career-launching debut, The House of the Spirits, a multigenerational, Latin American saga of love and revolution in which a young man abandons his family for the cause—and receives a late-life chance at redemption: “a tour de force” from “the new master” (Luis Alberto Urrea, New York Times bestselling author of Good Night, Irene).

In 1964, Stanislavo, a zealous young man devoted to his ideals, turns his back on his privilege to join the leftist movement in the jungles of Venezuela. There, as he trains, he meets Emiliana, a nurse and fellow revolutionary. Though their intense connection seems to be love at first sight, their romance is upended by a decision with consequences that will echo down through the generations.
Forty years later, the country’s political landscape has drastically changed, as have the trajectories that Stanislavo and Emiliana followed in the intervening decades. When a young boy is accidentally shot on the eve of the attempted coup against President Chávez, Stanislavo’s chance encounter with the boy’s mother forces a reckoning with past missteps and the ways his actions have reverberated into the present.
With its epic scope, gripping narrative, and unflinching intimacy, Freedom Is a Feast announces a major new talent. Alejandro Puyana has delivered an extraordinarily wise and moving debut about sticking to one’s beliefs at the expense of pain and chaos, about the way others can suffer for our misdeeds even when we have the best of intentions, and about the possibility for redemption when love persists across time.


Alejandro Puyana moved to the United States from Venezuela at the age of twenty-six. In 2022, he completed his MFA at the Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas. His work has appeared in Tin House, American Short Fiction, The American Scholar, New England Review, Idaho Review, among others, and his story "The Hands of Dirty Children" was selected by Curtis Sittenfeld for Best American Short Stories 2020. He lives with his wife and daughter in Austin, Texas.

"In this vivid and arresting novel lives are lived in triage. A man is 'a sheathed knife, ' and people are 'bargaining chips' during the dangerous reign of Hugo Chávez. Stories of humanity and even love shine through brutality, while lives change--or end--in an instant. Citizens are faced with impossible choices in the quest for freedom, and the need to honor their culture. Freedom Is a Feast is a memorable debut, and Puyana is already a master storyteller."-- Amy Hempel, author of Reasons to Live and The Collected Stories

"Freedom Is a Feastis a searing and soaring novel, a book that lays bare the costs of tyranny and the heart-rending sacrifices of those who dare to fight against it. By rendering the lives of characters from his native Venezuela with such clear-eyed compassion, Alejandro Puyana has given readers an extraordinary window into the soul of a nation.Freedom Is a Feastis the perfect novel for this political moment--a story of anger and loss, of courage and hope, and, with luck, of change."--Bret Anthony Johnston, author of the national bestseller Remember Me Like This

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