A Long Petal of the Sea

A Long Petal of the Sea

From the author of The House of the Spirits, this epic novel spanning decades and crossing continents follows two young people as they flee the aftermath of the Spanish Civil War in search of a place to call home.

In the late 1930s, civil war grips Spain. When General Franco and his Fascists succeed in overthrowing the government, hundreds of thousands are forced to flee in a treacherous journey over the mountains to the French border. Among them is Roser, a pregnant young widow, who finds her life intertwined with that of Victor Dalmau, an army doctor and the brother of her deceased love. In order to survive, the two must unite in a marriage neither of them desires.

Together with two thousand other refugees, they embark on the SS Winnipeg, a ship chartered by the poet Pablo Neruda, to Chile: “the long petal of sea and wine and snow.” As unlikely partners, they embrace exile as the rest of Europe erupts in world war. Starting over on a new continent, their trials are just beginning, and over the course of their lives, they will face trial after trial. But they will also find joy as they patiently await the day when they will be exiles no more. Through it all, their hope of returning to Spain keeps them going. Destined to witness the battle between freedom and repression as it plays out across the world, Roser and Victor will find that home might have been closer than they thought all along.

A masterful work of historical fiction about hope, exile, and belonging, A Long Petal of the Sea shows Isabel Allende at the height of her powers.

Title:A Long Petal of the Sea
Edition Language:English
ISBN:null
Format Type:

    A Long Petal of the Sea Reviews

  • Angela M

    I enjoyed a number of Allende’s earlier books, but a few of the more recent ones have not been quite as satisfying. Yet, I could not resist the opportunity to read this one because I was looking for...

  • Elyse  Walters

    “One of the most richly imagined portrayals of the Spanish Civil War to date, and one of the strongest and affecting works in [Isabelle Allende’s] long career” — —The New York Times book rev...

  • Debra

    I really struggled with this book and was shocked as I really enjoy Allende's work. Ines of My Soul being my favorite of her books. I enjoyed the beginning, Roser comes from nothing and is adopted by ...

  • Emma

    I just can't get into this one. The historical period was specifically what attracted me to the book but it overwhelms the story- too much research, too little character- all feeding into the list-lik...

  • Brina

    It is January and that means the winter doldrums. I am afflicted with seasonal affective disorder each winter and combat it with a jolt of vitamin d and an annual trip to Florida. A week in the sun un...

  • Ceecee

    Isabel Allende is one of my favourite authors and I have read a lot of her books over the years. This one is a real epic in every sense of the word and I read with fascination, admiration and at times...

  • Diane S ?

    4.5 So very glad that Allende has returned to form. I had trouble with her last few books, though her earlier novels were outstanding. Historicals are definitely her forte as this book about demonstra...

  • Jen

    Allende can romanticize the simple things Just as she does with this title to describe where Chile snuggles into South America and the Pacific Ocean.Her descriptions are so vivid you can smell the oce...

  • ? A ?

    ‘Years later, Neruda was to define it as a long petal of sea and wine and snow…with a belt of black and white foam...’ Keep in mind that this was my first adult book my Allende that I've read...

  • Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader

    Thank you, Random House and Ballantine Books, for the gifted copy. Isabel Allende has long been one of my favorite storytellers, ever since I read The House of the Spirits/La Casa de los Espiritus in ...