Wrong email address or username
Wrong email address or username
Incorrect verification code
back to top
Search tags: Bless-Me-Ultima
Load new posts () and activity
Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2020-03-07 00:40
New Mexico Coming of Age
Bless Me, Ultima - Rudolfo Anaya

The narrator, Antonio, is an intelligent, spiritually-inclined boy, the youngest of a large family in rural New Mexico. The villages and the land around them are drawn with depth and beauty. That’s the strongest aspect of this book: the spirit of the place. Trees, river, lake, sky, and soil are alive.


The tensions between farming and the restless life, between Christianity and earth-based spirituality, between compassion and cruelty, dark magic and healing magic, make up the drama of the book. Though the protagonist is a child, this is in no way a children’s book. Tony witnesses adults at their violent worst several times, as well as at their courageous best. The scenes of healing and of curses are extraordinary. Anaya’s portrait of the culture he grew up in is masterful.


Tony’s spiritual maturation is true to the ways of childhood, as he searches for answers to questions about the nature of God, of justice, and of mysterious things. The friendships of childhood, and the cruelties and sheer awfulness of some children, are real and vivid. A number of the characters are one-dimensional—Tony’s mother, his sisters, and most of the girls at school—but this is how they’re seen through the eyes of a young boy. Ultima, the curandera, is idealized, the essence of her kind of spirituality, and the tavern-owner Tenorio is the opposite, the dark force. In between is Tony’s friend Cico, who introduces him to a mystical divinity in nature. Cico is just another boy, but he’s one who knows a sacred secret.


The dream sequences are long though beautifully written. The children’s Christmas play runs on a bit, too, with no real contribution to the story—I think the author must have found it funnier than I did. All in all, though, the story is intense and compelling except for those sections, and made me feel even more deeply connected with this place I live, this place I love, New Mexico.

Like Reblog Comment
text 2014-10-11 03:03
New Books Before Vacation
Bless Me, Ultima - Rudolfo Anaya
The Haunting of Gabriel Ashe - Dan Poblocki
Longbourn - Jo Baker
Elegy Beach - Steven R. Boyett
Beautiful Outlaw: Experiencing the Playful, Disruptive, Extravagant Personality of Jesus - John Eldredge
Atlantia - Ally Condie
X-Files Season 10 Volume 2 - Guillermina De Ferrari,Elena Casagrande,Joe Harris,Michael Walsh
Return to Avalon - Jennifer Roberson

I am leaving for my vacation tomorrow, and I'm not going to come back to this same pile of books waiting to be put away! In the past couple weeks, I have acquired:


Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya - This one just came today, via Bookmooch. I read about it last week on a Common Sense Media.


The Haunting of Gabriel Ashe by Dan Poblocki - This is one of those books that has a storyline about blurring the line between fantasy and reality. I read about it in School Library Journal. Paperbackswap was a total tease about it. First it told me it was available. Then it wasn't. Then it was. Then I didn't believe it. But now I have proof!


Longbourn by Jo Baker - I found this book at Savers. And it's a fairly new book! And it's a Pride and Prejudice spinoff. I almost left it because I know the library has it. But then I dashed back for it at the last minute. MUST GET THIS BOOK THING UNDER CONTROL. (Who am I kidding?)


Elegy Beach by Steven Boyett - I got this in the mail from a friend (that I will be seeing on my vacation!). I introduced her to the book Ariel, and this book, written afterwards, takes place in the same world. But there are no unicorns in it. :( We might buddy read it this winter.


Beautiful Outlaw: Experiencing the Playful, Disruptive, Extravagant Personality of Jesus by John Eldredge - Received via Paperbackswap earlier this week. Because one can never have too many books about Jesus.


Atlantia by Allie Condie - This is another book I got through work. Too old for our demographic, but I'm going to keep it and read it myself.


The X-Files, Season Ten, #2 - I thought volume 1 was only average, but I still wanna see what happens. And my hubby will read it, too.


Return to Avalon: 20 Original Stories edited by Jennifer Roberson - This is a collection of King Arthur stories, also discovered at Savers, which should be a no-brainer. But I hesitated because it is also a tribute to Marion Zimmer Bradley, who I have ishy feelings about after learning that she was complicit in her husband's sexual abuse of neighborhood boys and that she also allegedly sexually abused her daughter. I didn't really want to "honor" her with a "tribute." But I wanted the King Arthur stories. And since it's secondhand, it's not like her estate is even getting any of the proceeds. In the end, King Arthur and my book-hoarderness won out.




Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
url 2014-09-18 02:13
Celebrate Banned book week (21-27 Sept 2014) by reading banned books
The Adventures of Captain Underpants - Dav Pilkey
The Bluest Eye - Toni Morrison
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian - Sherman Alexie,Ellen Forney
The Hunger Games - Suzanne Collins
A Bad Boy Can Be Good for a Girl - Tanya Lee Stone
Looking for Alaska - John Green
The Perks of Being a Wallflower - Stephen Chbosky
Bless Me, Ultima - Rudolfo Anaya
Bone - Jeff Smith

The 10 most challenged titles of 2013 were:


1. Captain Underpants (series), by Dav Pilkey
2. The Bluest Eye, by Toni Morrison

3. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie
4. Fifty Shades of Grey, by E.L. James
5. The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins
6. A Bad Boy Can Be Good for A Girl, by Tanya Lee Stone
7. Looking for Alaska, by John Green
8. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky
9. Bless Me Ultima, by Rudolfo Anaya
10. Bone (series), by Jeff Smith


How could Looking for Alaska by John Green. John Green is one of the nicest person ( from his many videos on YouTube) 


I've read John Green's books and nothing in it would trigger this book banning challenge. It is so strange that this book made into top 10 in 2013. 


Captain Underpants books are fun. Why challenge this? I've also read this and it is funny. 


The Bluest Eye is literature. Read that too. 


I hate Fifty Shades of Grey, the only book that I really dislike. But still banning it is going too far.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower is on my to-read pile. 


People who hate books should stay away from bookstores and library. They should not be so mean as to ban books that other people like to read. 


Books reading is a freedom. It is a right. 


Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
text 2014-07-02 18:31
June's Dreary Recap
The Ruins - Scott B. Smith
Bless Me, Ultima - Rudolfo Anaya
Vision in White - Nora Roberts
400 Days of Oppression - Wrath James White
The Road - Cormac McCarthy

Well June was a mixture of meh and depressing with a great big bonus of disappointment tossed in.  There was only one book that I really enjoyed and funny enough it was the one book I didn't think I'd enjoy all that much. Here's hoping I make better choice in July.


The Ruins by Scott B Smith  ***


Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya  **** 1/2


Vision in White by Nora Roberts  ** 1/2


400 Days of Oppression by Wrath James White ***


The Road by Cormac McCarthy  ****

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2014-06-03 19:29
Bless Me,Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya
Bless Me, Ultima - Rudolfo Anaya

This is a beautifully written coming of age story that I listened to as an unabridged audiobook. I don’t typically seek out this sort of book but the blurbage from the SYNC program caught my eye last summer and, well, it was free and I'm all about the free.


I regret reading many a book but my only regret here is that it took me a full year to actually take the time to listen to Bless Me, Ultima. It tells the story of a young boy named Antonio (Tony) whose family takes in an elder named Ultima, as is their tradition. Ultima takes young Tony under her wing and shares with him all of her knowledge about herbs and healing and introduces to him a world of mysticism that is at odds with the teachings of the Catholic Church. Antonio is a smart little boy and soaks up the knowledge but he struggles with his mother’s desire for him to make her proud and become a priest. As the years pass, Tony experiences all life’s joy and pain with Ultima always nearby to help him make sense of the world.


Every now and then I need a break from all of the horror and romance and this book was the perfect choice. The writing is very descriptive, even slightly poetic at times, and the lovely prose lends itself to audio quite nicely. I highly recommend this version read by Robert Ramirez. His narration is fantastic and adds so much depth to the experience. 4 ½ Stars

More posts
Your Dashboard view:
Need help?