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Isabel Allende was born in 1942, and is the niece of Salvador Allende, who went on to become famous as the elected President of Chile deposed in a CIA-backed coup. Her first novel for adults, `The House of the Spirits', was published in Spanish in 1982, beginning life as a letter to her dying grandfather. It was an international sensation, and ever since her books have been acclaimed and adored in numberless translations worldwide.
'"Island Beneath the Sea" is a seductive, intoxicating saga. It starts with slavery, forbidden relationships and rebellion in Haiti, and expands to include struggles over secret children, racial castes and family heirs in Louisiana. Isabel Allende's latest novel is sweeping, provocative and impossible to put down' Lawrence Hill, author of `The Book of Negroes' `A complex and involving saga of human passions and cruelties' TLS 'A magical storyteller' Daily Mail 'Allende's writing is so vivid we smell the countryside, hear the sounds, see the bright birds, smell and even taste the soft fruit' The Times `A truly wonderful piece of storytelling - a novel that pulls the reader into its rich, pungent world, and drives us along, dancing helplessly to the beat of the sorceress Allende's drum' Tablet `Allende is a brilliant storyteller ... a rich and beautiful read' The Stylist `Allende adroitly explores the role of the era's free people of color ... Island Benath the Sea is a lush lesson of a moment and place all too relevant today.' USA Today