The Day of the Moon

(4 customer reviews)


Language ‏ : ‎ English
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 228 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1558852743
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1558852747
Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 11.2 ounces
Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 5.54 x 0.71 x 8.49 inches


Fiction. Stark and resonant . . . Ms. Limon’s prose is a self-assured and engrossing — New York Times Book Review. In a dramatic new work, novelist Graciela Limon tells a story of forbidden loves: A tale that spans across the twentieth century, across the Southwest from Mexico to Los Angeles, across skin colors, across the sexes, across religious boundaries, across life and death, and across four generations of a family named Betancourt.

4 reviews for The Day of the Moon

  1. Kristine Brancolini

    Last night I heard Graciela Limón speak about her fiction writing. In response to a question from the audience she cited author Juan Rulfo as one of inspirations. Limón admires his spare prose — each word chosen for precise effect and meaning. This exactly describes the stylistic power of “The Day of the Moon.” It is beautifully concise and laden with meaning.

    The tragic story is told from the perspective of multiple characters: Don Flavio Betancourt; his daughter Isadora; Úrsula Santiago,a servant in Don Flavio’s house; Brígida Betancourt, Don Flavio’s sister; and Alondra, Isadora’s daughter. The novel primarily explores issues related to prejudice against Mexicans who are predominantly Indian on the part of Mexicans who are predominantly European. Don Flavio’s father was Spanish, but his mother was an Indian from Jalisco. Don Flavio’s feelings of shame regarding his mother’s indigenous background lead to tragedy, when his daughter falls in love with Jerónimo, a gifted Indian runner known as El Rarámuri.

    “The Day of the Moon” is relatively short, but Limón purposely pared down her novel to its essence. She creates believable characters with a few brushstrokes. As she passes the storytelling from character to character, the reader learns a little more. Don Flavio may be the most thoroughly unsympathetic and despicable fictional character I have encountered, but his life is so empty and sad that it’s difficult to hate him.

  2. toni

    a skillful portrayal of “forbidden” loves!
    from the first page, graciela limon takes her readers by the hand (and heart!) and leads them deep into a mostly misguided world where secrecy and shame shroud and shackle life’s inhabitants — but where real and true love will be neither silenced nor denied anymore!
    thanks to well-crafted and meaningful writing — you, too, will fall in love! … with a character, with a belief, with a cause! the power of the passion that has been poured into these pages will ignite in you a fire, and incite you to rise up alongside these courageous “underdogs” — and to fight against a man/society who/that so cunningly, coldly, and diabolically plots, schemes, connives and contrives to control those, who by virtue of nature and gender, have been born and are considered to be lesser/weaker, by condemning them to living deaths – for loving those who are “forbidden” — and, in one way or another, by taking the lives of their “forbidden” lovers.
    who can read, and not feel, the pleasure and pain that seduces and sways the lonely brigida as she first lays eyes on her brother’s betrothed? only to be forced to succumb to an empty life devoid of her existence. — and — who can bear witness to, and not be affected by, the finish of the raramuri’s race – in which isadora’s too-brown-skinned young lover will, quite literally, run away forever with her heart!
    yet, there is the promise of triumph amidst the tragedy — the novel ends with new hope in the form and character of alondra, isadora’s daughter, for this “bird that sings sweetly and flies to unknown distances” becomes intrigued by the passion(ate stories) of her past/ancestors, and returns to her roots in search of a better and brighter (a more enlightened) tomorrow.
    as one of limon’s characters reminds us: “some spirits are made for one another” — and, until the day comes when we are free to live and love without fear, condemnation or reserve on THIS side of the sierras, we have our/The Day of the Moon = a must read! especially for anyone who has ever been tormented by and/or lived a “forbidden” love!

  3. Deanna Shelor

    Graciela Limon has continued her tradition of giving us the real story from the point of view of indignas rather than settling for an accepted view of history. Just as she takes the Hummingbird god of war in Song of the Hummingbird and makes him the female diety Huitzitzilin, she invokes the male diety Xipe Totec and makes him female. Limon rewrites traditional mythology and gives power to the female. Her choice to call the Tarahumara tribe, Raramuri, the name they prefer rather than by the name the Spaniards gave them allows these people to have their own voice. On top of these accomplishments she gives us an innovative story and tells it so well we. Limon’s descriptions compliment the quality of her storytelling. Some are so effective that they give you chills, as when she describes a young girl’s horror of the shadows caught inthe corners of windows. She says, “The shadows that clung to the vaulted ceilings like giant blackbirds scared her (76).” Limon’s treatment of the different faces of silence gives her story strength. From the silence that the protagonist’s sister weilds to the silence that the scheming plotting protagonist Flavio maintains, and the silence of Isadora after she meets with a fateful demise, silence is a mechanism for mystery and intrigue. Day of the Moon is definitely a book you can’t put down. To read it is to be transported to another world, to another place in time, and into the lives of a type of people most of us have never even thought of.

  4. Hank Waddles

    Limón’s novel spans almost a century in the history of a Mexican family, beginning with Don Flavio Betancourt, a man who has nothing until he wins his boss’s hacienda in a card game. The story revolves around two forbidden loves; one between Don Flavio’s wife and his sister, the other between his daughter and an Indian. Limón begins her story during Don Flavio’s final days, and his memories lay out the general course of events within the first few chapters. Then, using a mixture of flashbacks and mysterious discoveries, she allows her characters to slowly reveal to each other (and to the reader) secrets which have been hidden along the way. This extremely well-written novel will entertain until the final page.

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