In Christopher David Rosales’ first novel, ‘Silence the Bird, Silence the Keeper’, he creates a completely unique vision that seamlessly blends tropes of magical realism and dystopian fiction in a portrait of power in America that we’ve never seen before. Imagine it as the communal love child of Marquez, Bolaño, and Orwell, a child who inhabits an America that resembles Pinochet’s Chile, and yet feels uncannily (and frighteningly) familiar to present day Los Angeles. A world in which street assassin Tre, a young and much beloved brother and son, finds himself caught in a city where all its citizens, even its most dangerous, are potential targets in the on-going power struggle between an authoritarian military regime and a not-so-community friendly guerrilla force. As Percival Everett says, “This novel treats revolution, love, betrayal and magic with equal adeptness and intelligence. In a world that is at once ours and foreign Rosales makes characters that will be remembered when the novel is done. (supplied by the publisher)
Book Review plus 4.2 stars
Christopher David Rosales demonstrated an incredible level of skill as he crafted these characters who not only retain the reader’s attention, but also out affection. Everyone has a back story, real and imagines, which Mr. Rosales reminds us that we all have stories that our communities and families know and discuss. These stories are known only to certain people who have inside knowledge of our lives.
Mr. Rosales attention to detail and his ability to draw from a rich literary tradition encourages the reader to invest in the characters and makes them seem like they are part of the reader’s family, yet unique to the situation in the story. For example, “Nora” calls to mind the most famous Nora of Western literature (Nora Helmer in Ibsen’s “A Doll’s House”). This guides us and helps us to, as we interpreteRosales’ Nora and references the questions we all have regarding freedom, captivity, and marriage.
At the very end, Rosales asks us to think about what it would truly mean to escape our current conditions.
Read the story and you find yourself questioning your life choices to see if you are living up to your potential and your life.
Official Website: https://www.christopherrosales.com/