The Hacienda by Isabel Cañas

Beatriz comes from the city in the aftermath of the Mexican Revolution, to a small hacienda that produces the liquor pulque, as the new bride of Don Rodolfo Solorzano, one of the Spanish-descended, criollo, nobility of the region.

She is seeking a safe harbor, her own home, but instead finds terror in Hacienda San Isidro.

We get alternating Beatriz and the mestizo priest, Andres, POV. From his POV we get lyrical, poetic, weather as embodied nature, indigenous spirits, and mystical musings.

From Beatriz we mostly get terror. She is haunted at first by slamming doors, mysterious giggles, and rough pushes, but soon things escalate, not only with the houses’ hate, but also with her husband’s domineering aloof sister.

The book succeeds in being creepy, atmospheric, and really historically informative and interesting in terms of the caste system around the Mexican revolution coupled with the spectre of the Spanish Inquisition.

I wanted Andres and Beatriz to suffer more. (Kind of weird thing to say, i know) however the implied danger of Hacienda San Isidro’s ghost, and the illicit relationship blooming despite Don Rodolfo’s temper, and the threat of Andres being discovered….kind of fizzled out without major damage. And so for me, some of the scariness was lessened.

Still, pretty interesting and entertaining story. (I guess I enjoyed Mexican Gothic more).

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