HARD RAIN

Composed of fragments of narratives interspersed with reviews of other novels whose subject is the socialist revolution in Chile during the early ’70s, this novel, written in 1972 and until now unavailable in English, tells the story of a country undergoing a radical “process of collective and personal self-examination.” Dorfman segues, without explanation, from one well-crafted, piquant fragment to another, using the narratives and reviews to question, mostly indirectly, the role of politics, art, love, work and spirituality in an unstable Latin American society. According to an interview with Dorfman contained within the novel itself, the author has attempted to depict “a mosaic of Chile, a sample of what had remained outside the book,” of the “insignificant fragments of reality.” The reader is likely to resist Dorfman’s ( Mascara ) unconventional, self-referential method, but by giving us several novels in one, he provides us with a rich contradictory work that feels alive with the promise of social and artistic change almost 20 years after the failure of Chile’s socialist revolution.