The Way to Paradise
The Way to Paradise by the Nobel Prize-winner Mario Vargas Llosa interweaves the story of the painter Paul Gauguin with that of his grandmother, Flora Tristan.
3 in stock
We are temporarily only able to ship Faber Shop orders to addresses in the UK.
The Way to Paradise interweaves the story of the painter Paul Gauguin with that of his grandmother, Flora Tristan. In 1844, Flora embarked on a tour of France to campaign for workers’ and women’s rights. In 1891, her grandson set sail for Tahiti, determined to escape civilisation and seek out inspiration to paint his primitive masterpieces. Flora died before her grandson was born, but their travels and obsessions unravel side by side in this absorbing novel.
A rare study of passion, ambition and the determined pursuit of greatness in the face of illness, death and conservative forces, The Way to Paradise shows Mario Vargas Llosa at the peak of his powers.
The Way to Paradise weaves an extraordinarily rich double fantasia around Gauguin's life, strenuously explores qualities in the works, and sets moral issues in a far wider, more real historical world ... riveting stuff, beautifully written, wild, exact, and visually stunning.
The visionary painter of paradise [Gauguin] emerges as a misunderstood genius of the kind it takes a genius like Mario Vargas Llosa to understand.
Vargas Llosa's storytelling gifts are pretty much unrivalled ... His recreation of the tactile, sensuous, brilliant, whiffy details of the everyday is superb ... a fabulously abundant book.
What makes the novel so illuminating is the continuity between [the] parallel lives ... The novel is highly accomplished and teems with characters, ideas and incident.
Oddly affecting ... an engrossing, sometimes horrifying image of social conditions in France [from] one of the great Latin American novelists of his time.
Fascinating ... vivid ... it's in [Gauguin's] part of the story, so full of the contradictions of this yearning, difficult man, that Vargas Llosa makes the book come alive.
Browse a selection of books we think you might also like, with genre matches and a few wildcards thrown in.