I started w/ Portrait in Sepia, but it wasn't until I was some way into it that I realized it was something of a sequel to Daughter of Fortune...she's an excellent read though, wherever you start...she writes really well and infuses it all w/ a lot of humor...
I started with 'House of the Spirits' and then I read "Portrait in Sepia". I've only just bought "Daughter of fortune". You can read them as a sequel, but it is just as easy to read them seperatly. I also read "Paula" which is a letter to her sick daughter and "Zorro". I just love them all! She has such a special way of writing! Just Amazing what she can do!
I started of with Daughter of furtune, way back when i had turned 21. I loved it. I did try and read House of spirits, but couldn't get into it. I've so many of her books, but never really get round to reading them.
I really enjoyed reading that one and will, one day read more of her books, as i think she is a great writer and also she has written many books.
'The House of the Spirits' would be the best place to start. It's a brilliant book - full of magical realism (I believe it's called). It's probably her best known book, and with good reason. It was made into a horrible movie some years back that just couldn't capture in any way the wonders of the book - urgh! But do read the book - it's wonderful!
This is the only book I read by her. It was awhile ago, but I remember it as being pretty good. I think it would be a fine place to start.
I would start with Daughter of Fortune or Zorro. House of Spirits is pretty good, but Allende uses a lot of magical realism in that book and if you aren't familiar with the style, it can be hard to get into.
I would start with House of the Spirits, then Eva Luna, Of love and shadows, Paula, Infinite Plan, etc.
I almost forgot: I also read Inez of my heart. This one is also a good one to start because it is independent (a little bit like Zorro). The other stories are often entwined because they have the same characters or they talk about the same events for a part but from a different point of view. It can be a bit confusing sometimes. But still I love House of the Spirits and I think it a shame that I don't even have it ! !
The first Isabel Allende book that I read was "The House of the Spirits". I fell in love with the characters and of course her way of writing. I recommend that you start with this book first. Ive read her other books as well but in opinion, this is the best book that she has written. Good thing I didnt watch the film adaptation because people say that it's really worst and that it did not give justice to the book. Happy reading!
I also started with "The House of the Spirits", but I think you can start with any of the adult novels (I have no idea what her young adult books are like--maybe I should check them out.)
About magic realism in "The House of the Spirits": one of the interesting things is that there is a lot of it when she's telling the story of the older generations, but it fades considerably when we get to the events lived by the narrator-character, Alba. (The coup and its aftermath.) That is kind of how it is with family stories, isn't it? :-)
Somehow I didn't like "Zorro" that much, but I'm still thinking about it.
I started with House of Spirits and went to Eva Luna after... both of which I found to be phenomenal reads.
I'd start with Daughter of Fortune. I thought it was a great read and had looked forward to reading her other books, but ended up not enjoying them quite as much.
Start with eva luna then house of spirits, or I think you should read all of her early work before and then the new, that way you can follow the stories better since some of them take off where one ends. Daughter of fortune and Portrait of Sepia are completely different than her earlier work, I can't tell you which is the best you have to read them all and see for yourself.
I read House of the Spirits first. Then, year later read Daughter of Fortune. Portrait in Sepia continues the historical novel saga begun in Daughter of Fortune about a remarkable woman in the 19th century who made her way to San Francisco and became a wealthy woman. One of Allende's talents is to tell a massive story without taking up massive amounts of pages. I was totally absorbed by these books and did not want them to end!
I agree - House of the Spirits is a great place to start. I really loved Paula as well. Of Love and Shadows was good too. I would start with the less known books and then work up to Daughter of Fortune and Portrait In Sepia.
I start with this one, and it was the hardest book I have ever finished. I would never have been able to read it without the help I received from my amazing English teacher. I don't recommend books anymore because just because you like one book does not mean you will like that author's books or other books of that genre.
I read this a few years ago. A good summer read.
a wonderful novel, always wondered if they could make a film of it, but its sad and uplifting and joy to read
not anybody's best work, couldnt even finish it, dont care how it ends
well, i can be finicky, cant stand syeinbeck either, but love a lot of great writers and more than a few who are just fun reads, i didnt find it hard to read, but like my experience with larry mcmurrtry, i thought, because i had seen a good movie based on their books, they would be great to read, but really found both did not know how to write a book to my satisfaction. but as you say, my not liking it does not impact on whether the next person does or not. my wife enjoys most of allende's work.
umm, in case somebody couldnt figure it out that is a typo, it should read "cant stand steinbeck"
I liked this book well enough (not as much as Allende's Zorro), but I was a little disappointed in the ending. I've been told there are other books using the same characters that fill in more details ... but, that doesn't fix it for me. I felt like the end was wrapped up too hastily. It felt like I was reading the cheesy ending to a movie instead of getting all the good details from a book. Maybe I'll change my mind if I ever get time to read one of the companion books.
In all, I was a bit disappointed since I really loved Allende's Zorro. (As in: if you've never picked up Allende, Zorro is the better way to go.)