House of the unholy
This novel typifies Vargas Llosa’s non-sequential narrational techniques and his use of alternating dialogues to portray scenarios that are separate in space and time. A willfully experimental and uncompromising author that goes to great lengths to disorientate and unsettle the reader, The Green House is one of his most challenging. Try to follow every thread and you will find this a frustrating read, alow yourself to absorb its atmosphere and get lost in its tangential nature and you might be rewarded.
Set in Piura, an isolated coastal town hemmed in by the mountains and desert – the oldest Colonial town in Peru – it intertwines individual stories of love and loss all connected to the eponymous brothel. It also looks the conflict between nature and civilisation, as a missionary church struggles to exorcise a perceived savagery in the native jungle communities. Be warned, this can be hard work, but it is a rich and evocative journey into the national psyche of Peru.